October 26-27 Mountain View, California

10-26-2013 1-51-41 PM

Looking down at the Pacific Ocean from a coastal mountain trail in California. You can see the fog bank sitting just off shore.

I love hiking in the coastal mountains in California because of its very unique climate and view! The coastal beaches can be foggy and cool, and yet the coastal mountains are sunny and warm, with great views unless the fog has rolled in like a thick blanket to cover everything below the mountain tops. In California, surfers don’t seem to mind the fog and cool temperatures, as there were plenty of them out catching waves when we stopped briefly at a beach. It was a brief stop because we all had to put on jackets, and we didn’t want to hang out long in the cold!

10-26-2013 12-33-29 PM

Pat, Ben, and Melody looking at surfers on a beach near the Bay Area in California

The hiking trail that we took up to this coastal peak was not far from that foggy beach (really!) We could all shed our jackets and enjoy the sunny, warm but not hot weather. This is why so many people want to live in the Bay area, with year round good outdoor activities weather!

10-26-2013 3-07-55 PM

Melody, Pat, Ben, and Ann near the top of a peak in the coastal mountains.

We found an interesting little cave on our search for an alternate trail down the mountain. We found the other trail, but decided not to take it, as it would have involved more bush-waking and battling under-growth on the way down. But before we went back to our original trail, everyone except me climbed up to check out the cave.

10-26-2013 4-44-13 PM

Jeff, Melody, Ben, and Pat in a cave

One of the great things about our weekend visit was the discovery of the Grand Hotel in Sunnyvale. In the past, we have either stayed in Melody and Dan’s apartment, or in the hotel across the street from their apartment complex. The hotel across from their apartment complex is your average, extended stay hotel, with small kitchens in the rooms, and a very limited breakfast menu of coffee, muffins, breakfast bars, apples and oranges. It is okay, but nothing special. I was going to book a room there again this time, but they were going to charge us $350 for two nights! I went online to find a less expensive place, and booked a room at the Grand Hotel instead. They were only asking for $200 for the two night stay.

It was a bit further away from the apartment complex in Mountain View, across the city line in Sunnyvale. But it was well worth the drive. The room was very nice, they had a heated pool (which I used on Friday afternoon), and a great breakfast service with lots of choices. And they had a cocktail hour, with free drinks and food from 5-7 pm! We both liked it a lot, and I will likely stay there again.

10-26-2013 8-25-11 AM

The lobby of the Grand Hotel in Sunnyvale, CA

Every Sunday, there is a Farmers’ Market in the parking lot near the train station Mountain View. I go to it every time I am in Mountain View on a Sunday, and I always end up buying a lot of fresh fruit and vegetables because everything looks so good and tastes so delicious! Jeff always takes his camera to captures lots of photos of colorful fruit and veggies, and I eat samples from one end of the market to the other!

10-27-2013 10-23-17 AM

Ben and Ann at the Mountain View Farmers’ Market. I am sampling apples at this farm stand.

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