Photo Girl Travels

Taking the Road Less Traveled


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Nantucket Island,the Gray Lady

The car rattled over the old cobble stone road and I made my way into the historic town of Nantucket. Tourists stroll along the sidewalks dripping with dense flowers in window boxes. I’m fresh off the red eye from San Jose to JFK and then JFK to Nantucket so feeling a little tired. The smell in the air is a mixture of fresh roasted coffee and the ocean.ย  I’m in love.ย  I find my way to Union Street and into a tight parking place on the Union Street Inn property and sigh, I finally feel like I’m on vacation. The hotel is a mid 18th century B&B and it’s lovely.ย  One of my favorite parts of the town are the cobblestone roads and the brick laid cross walks. It’s like stepping back in time. Here are a few photos from my first day on the island…

 

I’ll write more on the hotel in a separate post. But now I want to take you through the town with my photos. I wish I could send you the smell of fresh cut grass and sea roses. Here are some photos from my first day ๐Ÿ’—๐Ÿ’—๐Ÿ’—

Balboa Island, California

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Morning walk on Balboa Island

Morning walk on Balboa Island

During a business trip last week I was able to rediscover a beautiful island located off Newport Beach in southern California.ย  I was actually following a sign to Fashion Island, which is a pretty amazing shopping mall.ย  Listed on that same sign was “Balboa Island” and I thought “what the heck, I’ll take a look.”ย  I headed up over a small bridge and into another world.

View from the walkway. There was a sailboat race the afternoon I was there

View from the walkway. There was a sailboat race the afternoon I was there

A charming village, Balboa Island if full of local shops, restaurants, world famous chocolate covered bananas and a whole lot more. There is one main street where you’ll find everything you need to eat, drink, shop and be merry. There is also a path that runs along the water’s edge that runs around the island.ย  As you leave the main street and walk around the island, you’llย find more shops and restaurants on the other side.ย  A great break if you’re attempting a “pub crawl”.ย  You can drive over the bridge or take the Island Ferry.ย  Below you’ll find a few maps showing you where the island is located and a close up showing you the bridge, where to shop/eat and the path around the island.ย If you’re in the SoCal area and near Newport Beach it’s worth the visit.ย  You won’t be disappointed!

Here's where Balboa Island is located

Here’s where Balboa Island is located

Here's a close up showing you around the island

Here’s a close up showing you around the island

Here are some photos from my visit!

Here's the walkway around the Balboa Island with some fabulous homes

Here’s the walkway around the Balboa Island with some fabulous homes

Tons of docks stretch out over the water

Tons of docks stretch out over the water

View from the walkway. There was a sailboat race the afternoon I was there

View from the walkway. There was a sailboat race the afternoon I was there

Love this sign on the dock

Love this sign on the dock

Great way to chill is to put your feet in the sand!

Great way to chill is to put your feet in the sand!

Shelley D Spray

Dinner at Amelia's

Dinner at Amelia’s

Amelia's salad - it was REALLY good!

Amelia’s dinner, sea bass, pasta and steamed veggies – it was REALLY good!

Here’s a helpful website with more information: http://www.balboaisland.com/

Would you like a print? Please click on โ€œContactโ€. My photography is printed on aluminum. Utilizing an advanced process which infuses dyes directly into the metal, the colors and saturation are really amazing. In addition, your print will be displayed using mount blocks which float the image ยฝ inch off the wall.

ยฉ2013 Shelley D Spray โ€“ No content on this site (including all photography) may be reused in any fashion without written permission from the author.

Mount Shasta, California

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Mount Shasta Reflection in Siskiyou Lake at Sunrise

Mount Shasta Reflection in Siskiyou Lake at Sunrise

If you’ve never driven on Highway 5 and had the chance to see this active volcano located at the southern end of the Cascade Range in Siskiyou County, California, you’re really missing out. One of the most impressive things is that you see it’s white capped mountain top about 140 miles before you even get to it (if it’s a clear, sunny day) It’s that huge!

Mount Shasta Photo taken when I pulled off the highway about 50 miles away

Mount Shasta Photo taken when I pulled off the highway about 50 miles away

The oldest human habitation in the area around Mount Shasta is about 7000 years ago. And by about 5000 years ago, there was substantial human habitation in this area. (I find that quite amazing) Although it is covered with snow, John Muir wrote a dramatic article about an experience in which he survived an overnight blizzard on Mount Shasta by lying in the hot sulfur springs found near the summit. (I personally am not sure I would have ever left the warm, cozy springs and would, to this day, be a shriveled raisin waiting for someone with a heated blanket to pick me up…)

Here are some photos I shot. These were on the way to the town of Mount Shasta which sits at the base of the mountain. I love cows so was over the moon when I saw them grazing in a field with the mountain in the background:

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I kept seeing photos of the mountain by a lake. I guess I thought I’d drive out to this lake which would be in the middle of a state national park and shoot my photos like Ansel Adams. The lake is actually called Lake Siskiyou and is located by where I stayed – The Mount Shasta Resort – which I’ll tell you about next. If you want to take photos with the lake in the foreground, you’ll need to drive to Lake Siskiyou and then find the Lake Siskiyou Camp Resort. You can also camp in this park, swim and hike. It will cost you $1.00 to enter the park for the day which in my book is a deal. Here are the photos I shot around 7:30am.

Mount Shasta Reflection in Siskiyou Lake at Sunrise

Mount Shasta Reflection in Siskiyou Lake at Sunrise

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Here is a small shop where you can get food, drinks, bait, etc. once you’re in the park.

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Where to Stay: Mount Shasta Resort

I stayed at the Mount Shasta Resort which is located by/on Lake Siskiyou. Before I tell you about the place I have to make note of the service. Everyone was VERY helpful, professional and super friendly. Which is really nice when you’ve been driving for a long time. A special thanks to Christy for all of her help. If you do stay there ask for her and please tell her Photo Girl says hi! I stayed in one of the Chalets which are located directly on Lake Siskiyou. They are quiet, peaceful and very relaxing. You’ll find a kitchen, bedroom(s), fireplace, living room and some have private decks. Also, the view when you check in is pretty amazing. The first image is what you see. Behind you is a gorgeous golf course. (Dad’s play free on Father’s Day and I believe you can also play for free on your birthday!) Here are some of the photos:

Mount Shasta Resort Check In View

Mount Shasta Resort Check In View

Here are some photos of the room:

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In the morning I took a walk through the parking lot and over to the lake’s edge:

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I hope you’ll have a chance to visit this beautiful area! Next, I’m going to take you along when I buy a set of golf clubs ๐Ÿ˜‰

Key links:

City of Mount Shasta: http://ci.mt-shasta.ca.us/

Mount Shasta Resort: http://mountshastaresort.com/

Would you like a print? Please click on โ€œContactโ€. My photography is printed on aluminum. Utilizing an advanced process which infuses dyes directly into the metal, the colors and saturation are really amazing. In addition, your print will be displayed using mount blocks which float the image ยฝ inch off the wall.

ยฉ2013 Shelley D Spray โ€“ No content on this site (including all photography) may be reused in any fashion without written permission from the author.

Ceago Winery, an Italian Oasis on Clear Lake California

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Between the villages of Nice and Lucerne on the north shore Clear Lake is an Italian oasis that will take your breath away. I had originally found it on the Internet and decided to drive over and take a look yesterday, after I drove through the tree in the Redwood Forest. California is a bit like that, the terrain can completely change after driving for an hour or two.

The villa is charming and quite elegant. It was almost 100 degrees when I arrived so when I stepped through the doors the cool air felt amazing. I walked through the villa, past the wine tasting room and the out into a courtyard. There were groups of people eating, and sipping wine and I felt like I was in Tuscany.

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Then, when I looked ahead of me I could not believe my eyes. A huge blanket of lavender lined a pathway that lead out to the lake! It was gorgeous! I’ll let the photos speak for themselves because I truly can’t describe the beauty.

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The last photo is looking back toward the villa. If you turn around you’ll see the dock that leads out to the lake.

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The following photos are of the gardens and one last on in the tasting room. In The gardens you’ll find fig trees, apples, citrus and a few bees. BTW…The wine is fabulous and yes, I did buy a few bottles. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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Quick links:

Link to their website: http://www.ceago.com/

Also, the 9th Annual Lavender Harvest Celebration is Saturday, July 6th, 1-5pm. For more information go to “events” at www.ceago.com, or you can purchase tickets by emailing nina@ceago.com. I’ve never been butย again,ย the lavenderย fields that you find behind the villa are absolutely amazing! ย If you do go please let me know!ย  Shelley

 

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Yes… I Did Drive Through a Tree

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Driving through the Redwood Forest takes a very patient person (which I am not) You creep along at 5-10 miles an hour, taking hairpin turns with your eyes peeled – looking for a bike rider who is either flying along like a bat out of hell, or peddling with all their might and you’d swear they were not moving, or yes, pushing their bike. Is this fun I ask? ??? I say no but there I am driving like a slug with a death grip on the wheel.

After a 75 mile drive that took me longer than I’d like to admit, I decided to drive through…well, a tree. Thank heavens there was one along the way that allowed me to do just that. It’s called the chandelier tree and
it’s at the 1/101 junction. Here are some pics just after my Redwood adventure.

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So we’re not heading further north and I’m figuring out plan B … Stay tuned for our next stop!

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