Anderson Valley

On Saturday November 24, with Thanksgiving behind us, we decided to hit the road for a three day trip to Mendocino. We grabbed a few items of food, a change of clothes, hopped in the truck and headed north, taking Highway 101 to Cloverdale where we turned west onto Highway 128. We logged 126 miles from our house to Mill Creek Retreat, where we had reserved a camp site ahead of time.  The drive took us four hours, since we’re inclined to take our time and enjoy the drive.

As we headed west on Highway 128 we were surprised at the color along the route. Oaks and willows were putting on a show of yellow. We stopped to take a few photos. We just drove past many wineries and tasting rooms along the way. Being preoccupied with the color and beauty in the valley we didn’t stop for wine tasting. We did stop at the market in Boonville to pick up a bottle  of wine from one of the local wineries,  a bottle of Husch Pinot Noir which proved to be quite nice.  There are dozens of wineries along this drive, so you could easily spend a day or more just visiting wineries. 

Treve, Carson and our Four Wheel Camper at Mill Creek Retreat

We arrived at our intended camping destination at 3:30, set up camp and let our dog Carson loose to roam free. One of our criteria for selecting Mill Creek Retreat was the fact that it’s a dog friendly and dogs can be off leash. We found this location through, a website that lists camping locations on private property that may not be listed on other camping directories.  

The next morning, before heading off to explore the town of Mendocino we walked down to the creek. I was curious to see what photo opportunities I might discover. I can usually find something close at hand. 

Sure enough there was some color along the creek, and with the soft-misty light of the clearing fog, I captured a few pictures. I had to improvise a camera support, since my tripod got left behind. I jury rigged three trekking poles with with a little  Ultra-pod. This seemed to be sufficient for my Sony RX 100.

At the end of the day we found ourselves at Van Damme Beach where we watched the sun sink into the ocean before heading back to camp.

Sunset at Van Damme Beach. Mendocino

More on Mendocino in the next post.

Author: treve

When I'm not creating architectural photos for clients (see my primary website at, I like to travel, hike, kayak and enjoy other artistic and cultural pursuits. I'm also concerned about environmental and social issues and issues of faith.

3 thoughts on “Anderson Valley”

  1. Wonderful pictures (no surprize given your profession). I have marked Mill Creek Retreat as a place to visit. to welcome Spring. We live close (Novato) so it will make for a nice short trip.I see you have a Four Wheel camper We just ordered a FWC Hawk and a new truck so this location may be where we 1st go to! Thanks for sharing you travels and your wonderful photo’s.

    1. Hi Melanie – Thanks for the comment and welcome to the FWC club. Mare sure to get on the mailing list for events. FWC usually has a spring rally in Northern California and a fall rally in So Cal. Last year we went to the rally in Bodega Bay and learned quite a bit about tips, trick and hacks that other campers had made to their rigs. If you have a dog and you want to an isolated camp where your dog and be off leash then Mill Creek Retreat is a great option. Without a dog I might be inclined to camp at one of the state parks or county parks on the coast.

  2. Thanks for the welcome and the heads up on the Rallies, we were at both of the Rallies last year at least for portion of them. We have been a bit of a lurker for a couple of years while figuring out what want and waiting for the right time (retirement within a year). Meanwhile I have been doing lots of camping, but the FWC brings things up a notch. We of course will make both the Rallies for 2019. I will look for you there. The camper arrives around the 1st of Feb! BTW, great jacket, that matches our upcoming Woolrich camper. LOL

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