Saturday, August 30, 2014

Baldwin Beach day with friends

Today, I went to Baldwin Beach to celebrate Chen's birthday. We were going to stay in a hotel or camp, but it was so last minute and every place was booked. We weren't really sure of much of the details until the night and even the morning of going.

We met up at 9:00am and headed out around 9:20ish. We ended up getting to the beach around 11am. I was really worried about whether or not we would find a parking spot. My worries were gone once both of our cars were in and saw that there was still plenty of parking spaces available when we arrived.

My friend followed me on the way to Baldwin Beach, in South Lake Tahoe. I drive kind of fast, so I was worried whether my friend would be able to keep up. But, my friend followed me ok.

When we first got there, we took some pictures. Afterwards, Eric and Shan helped BBQ'ed turkey burgers and hot links. Chen brought turkey burgers, which I didn't actually try. I'm more of a beef patty gal. I didn't realized how hungry I was until the food was being cooked and saw everyone eating. We ended up BBQ twice today and at the end we had smores. I always think that smores is a great way to end a BBQ gathering :).

There's this pole that's right in the middle of the lake. I considered that a point, in which you have to learn how to swim or you would drown. Today, I learned that some people can actually climb that pole and stand on the top and then jump off. I was kind of shocked. Eric tried to climp up it, but said it wasnt as stable. But, its the effort that matters right?

 I didn't get to go swimming today, but I got to put my feet in the water and that felt so good.

Before we left, we took more pictures on the beach. We did a few jumping photos and Chen wanted to do moving panaromic photos, but we weren't to sure of how to do them. We didn't get too take as many as we would have liked though because Chen's camera died quickly. I got to admit though, I had a great time taking photo with friends.

Overall, I had a great time. Next time, I'm definitely going kayaking and doing more swimming. Also, I will keep in mind to always apply sunscreen throughout the day. Maybe next time, I can even go to a different beach and see new scenery. I can't wait until the next time I'm at the beach.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Baldwin Beach & First Time Camping in South Lake Tahoe

On Saturday, I went to Lake Tahoe with a friend. I was quite excited since it was my first time in Lake Tahoe. I was supposed to go to Lake Tahoe with a group of my friends around this time, but they never finalized the details so it hasn't happened yet.

So, me and my friend originally planned on leaving Sacramento and head out to Lake Tahoe at 6am. I didn't get out of work until 5:08am though. I decided to just fill up on gas and pick up stuff and leave. I didn't feel tired while driving to #LakeTahoe, but the sun was shining so brightly on my eyes! I couldn't drive very fast since I couldn't see much of the road ahead of me. It took my about 2 hours to drive to Lake Tahoe from Sacramento that morning. There were lots of passing lanes, which I appreciated.

I was amazed by the scenery of Lake Tahoe on the drive to the destinations. I love how the tall height of the trees. I like the mountains. I was terrified at one point when I was driving because I noticed how high we were on the mountain. It was magnificent though. 

Our first destination was Baldwin beach. I knew that I definitely wanted to go to a beach in Lake Tahoe. I researched a few beaches and there were a lot of beautiful beaches. I think I decided #Baldwinbeach because I read that it was more secluded and it seemed closer. I also like the view of the mountain and lake at the same time. 

When we first got to the beach, we noticed a hot air balloon. I thought it was cool, but wished it was closer, so that we would have a better view. I think we were the first ones at the beach that day! The parking lot was completely empty until we showed up.

I also noticed some grills and tables that are just right off the parking lot. Too bad, I didn't get to see anyone use them that day.

I dont know why, but I enjoyed the small walk to the beach. I didn't like the sand as much though.

Since we were the first ones on the beach, we had it all to ourselves for a bit, which was nice. The view far from us looked gloomy, but nice nonetheless.

 There was paddleboats, canoe boats, and other stuff already on the beach when we got there. It wasn't long until staff came to assist those who wanted to rent the boats and other items.

I really like the water at the Baldwin beach. It was clear and clean. The waves weren't too strong. It was cold, but eventually I got used to it. I'm glad that when I first arrived I took a dip in the water.

For lunch, we had burgers, soda, and some chips. I ate 2 burgers and some chips, but I was still kind of hungry, but I was ok for at the moment.

While swimming and looking at the scenery, we notice others starting to come in and participating in water activities. It looked so cool and something fun to do.

I think jet skiing was probably the most fun looking activity.

Lately, I been spending more time on Pinterest and one of my favorite things to look at is things to do and travel. I remembered that I saw a hair flip picture on Pinterest and knew that I just had to do it sometime.

Ah, there's no other feeling that being in nice water. I'm glad that the water wasn't that deep. I'm also glad that there wasn't that many rocks there, which made it easier to put my feet in the sand. I didn't go to far though because I didn't really know how to swim well.

I think around 11 was when the beach started to get really packed and there was people all over the beach. I sort of wanted to walk along the beach, but then again I know that walking on beaches can take a long time from my experience at Limantour Beach in Point Reyes.

 At noon, we decided to leave and look for a walk in camping spot. When we were leaving the Baldwin Beach parking lot, one of the rangers waved at us, which was cool. I also noticed that there was a long line of cars waiting to get in since the parking lot was full and I think that a car only gets to come in once another car leaves.

I haven't ever went camping before, but I wanted to go. We first tried calling places around us. We originally were going to go to Mount Rose, which was over an hour drive from the current spot, but I didn't exactly feeling driving further, so we contacted closer campgrounds. I believe it was DL Bliss Campground that told me that they still had spots open and couldn't sell spots until 12pm, so we drove to there only to find out they were full. The volunteer then suggested that we head to the US Forest Forest which was pretty close and would be able to tell us more about camping places, so we headed there.

When we reached the center, I noticed that there was lots of stuff to do there. There were hiking trails, beaches, and other possible places which I didn't really take the time to explore because I wanted to make sure we had a camping spot.

Now that I think about it, it would have been cool to explore that place. It looked great.

The ranger recommended that we head to Camp Richardson, which was like pretty close. So, we headed there. I stopped at the first #CampRichardson sign I saw and it was actually a horseback riding destination. We then found out that the campground was right after it. That area was where there was the most traffic. In addition, at the area was when I first smelled campfires when I first reached Lake Tahoe.

We were lucky enough to have a camping spot without a reservation. The camping fee was $35, which I found reasonable although I never been camping before. I really liked that there were other people around instead of us because that made me feel safer. Also, I liked that we can drive our cars right at our camping spot and set up from there.

 At nighttime, we lit up a fire with the pit that they had installed in the park and made some s'mores. The s'mores were so delicious and fitting camping.

I was really hoping to see stars, but there was so many trees surrounding us that we didn't get a good view of the stars. We did get to see the moon for a few minutes though until the view was eventually blocked by trees.

It was so cold at night, I really should have brought more blankets and created more layers for comfort. Oh well, at least I know what to next time. I really hope to explore Lake Tahoe, Yosemite, or other destinations soon with friends.

When we came back to Sacramento, the drive was more smooth, especially since the sun wasn't as bright. When we were back in Sacramento, we ate at Bangkok at 12. It was my first time there although I used to frequent the area. The food was delicious. I think I will definitely be back.

 I loved the fried roti with condense milk and coconut ice cream. My friend said that he didnt like curry, but read the reviews of the mango curry and wanted to give it a try. My friend tried the curry and was very happy about it and was glad to know that curry can be so delicious. Ah, now I cant wait for more thai food and fun adventures :).