Friday, April 26, 2013

Curtis' Seventh Post

"Stinson Beach is a favorite for locals, some of whom have cabins in the hills around the small town and come to spend part of each summer here.  Many cabins are for rent as well.  There is also a gated community with homes built within hundred meters of the breaking surf.  California eventually passed a law prohibiting such development, but these homes are entitled to remain.  Needless to say they’ve become extremely valuable.  I often visited a friend in one such home.  His family purchased two parcels of land for $5,000 each when the development started and built a rather humble home.  That land is likely worth a million dollars today.  A neighboring house is on the market at the moment for $4,495,000!

The beach...

Then driving north past Bolinas lagoon at the north edge of Stinson Beach.  Audobon Canyon Ranch is opposite this lagoon that attracts a great many birds, including egrets who nest on the Audobon land.  It is a favorite with visitors who can walk on trails above trees where the egrets build their nests.  One can peer down into the nests and see newborn birds.

Heading north on Highway 1 I decided to visit another retreat center, this one in Olema. The Vedanta Retreat Center is associated with the Vedanta Society of Northern California. The Center resides on 2000 acres adjacent to Point Reyes National Seashore that was purchased in 1946. The land still is used to pasture beef cattle, but the original farmhouse was converted into a meditation hall, library, kitchen and sleeping area reserved for men on retreat. A separate building was added later for women who wished to go on retreat. There is no charge but individuals seeking to go on retreat must meet with the Swami in San Francisco. One must bring bedding and one’s own food. Here is the original farmhouse.

On the ride home I stopped to take a photo of the road running through the redwoods. This is a drive I take every time I head to West Marin."

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