Road Scholar : Home
California National Park Medley: From Giant Sequoias to Coast Redwoods

Program Number: 2811RJ
Start and End Dates:
6/14/2015 - 6/27/2015; 9/6/2015 - 9/19/2015; 10/4/2015 - 10/17/2015;
Duration: 13 nights
Location: San Francisco, California
Price starting at: $2,999.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: On the Road; National Parks; Natural History
Meals: 35; 13 Breakfasts, 11 Lunches, 11 Dinners    
Meal Options: Gluten Free; Low Salt; Low Fat; Vegetarian    

Immerse yourself in California’s national parks — Sequoia/Kings Canyon, Yosemite, Lassen, Redwoods — and experience fascinating stops in Mono Lake, Lake Tahoe, Carson City, Virginia City, Shasta Dam and Mendocino. This exceptional California adventure spotlights the state’s topographic and climatic diversity, from the open desert of the Eastern Sierra, across two mountain ranges to the rugged North Coast.




Highlights

• Marvel at giant, ancient sequoia groves and redwoods, two very different and equally remarkable species of tree.
• With expert naturalists, experience Yosemite Valley and dine at the historic Wawona hotel.
• Visit the fumaroles and mud pots of Lassen Volcanic National Park, and travel to the base of Shasta Dam, the second-largest dam in the country.



Activity Particulars

Walking up to one mile, varied terrain; standing 60 minutes. Elevations will exceed 3,000 up to 9,000 feet.



Itinerary Summary

Arrival Burlingame, Calif., 1 night; coach to Fresno (Sequoia National Park), 2 nights; coach to Yosemite Lodge at the Falls (Yosemite National Park), 2 nights; coach to Carson City, Nev., 3 nights; coach to Redding, 1 night; coach to Eureka (Redwood National Park), 2 nights; coach to Mendocino, 2 nights; coach to Burlingame, departure.



Coordinated by Road Scholar.




Sequoia National Park

The second national park designated in this country, Sequoia National Park encompasses vast and magnificent terrain. From mountain peaks, deep canyons and immense Redwood trees, this park is a gem among gems.



Eureka

Eureka is the largest city on California’s North Coast. It is located on Humboldt Bay, about 270 miles north of San Francisco. The city takes its name from the state motto, supposedly exclaimed upon the discovery of gold in California. Eureka is surrounded by the most extensive preserves of the world’s tallest tree: the California redwood.



Mendocino

Perched on a scenic headland surrounded by the Pacific Ocean, Mendocino is a thriving artist colony and a popular weekend getaway for residents of San Francisco, 200 miles south. Once the location of the TV series, “Murder, She Wrote,” the town has several parks and nature reserves that offer panoramic views and good birdwatching.



Redwood National Park

You probably know that Redwood National Forest has the world’s tallest trees, but did you know that the park also protects vast prairies, oak woodlands and nearly 40 miles of wild coastline? Here, banana slugs, gray whales, Douglas fir, black bears and sea anemones are equally at home with the Giant Redwoods.



Lassen National Park

The hydrothermal features of this northeastern California park include boiling mud pots and bubbling sulfur pools, indicating the geothermal activity just beneath the surface of the pristine lakes and backcountry trails. Stunning views of the Cascades and Sacramento Valley unfold in all directions from the top of Lassen Peak.



Mono Lake

 Located in California's spectacular Eastern Sierra, Mono Lake is one of our nation’s most sublimely beautiful locations, reflecting the snow-capped Sierra Nevada in its shimmering blue waters. The nearby volcanoes, ghost towns and trout-filled streams make this area a true wonderland.



Lake Tahoe (Nevada)

The eastern side of the 1,000-foot-deep Lake Tahoe offers close access to Mount Rose Wilderness area, nestled between the Sierra Nevada and the Great Basin, as well as the Tahoe Rim Trail and numerous historic sites documenting the human heritage of this mountainous region.



Kings Canyon National Park

Kings Canyon National Park lies in the California’s southern Sierra Nevada range. Huge mountains, rugged foothills, deep canyons, vast caverns and the world’s largest trees testify to nature’s size, beauty and diversity. The most famous section of Kings Canyon is the General Grant Grove, home of some of the biggest giant sequoias on the planet.



Carson City

In 1859, gold and silver were found in nearby Comstock Lode — simultaneously, Carson City became a bustling commercial center in the heart of the Old West. Today, Nevada’s capital city is a center for the state’s politics, and is near prime locations for skiing in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.



San Francisco

A stunning city with a colorful past and vibrant present, San Francisco offers legendary landmarks — the Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman’s Wharf, cable cars and elegant Victorian homes — along with spectacular cityscapes and views of bay and bridges.



Accommodations
Comfortable hotels and lodges.

Road Scholar Instructors
These instructors are participating on at least one date of this program. Please note that changes may occur.
Mark McLaughlin

Mark McLaughlin is a weather historian who lives on the north shore of Lake Tahoe. He has appeared on the History Channel program, “History’s Mysteries,” to talk about the “Storm King” — the unpredictable weather in the Sierra. An award-winning non-fiction writer as well as an entertaining and popular lecturer, Mark has authored two volumes of “Sierra Stories” and recently published “Western Train Adventures.”
 
David Lukas

David Lukas is a naturalist and writer based in the Sierra Nevada. He has been teaching natural history and bird programs for 16 years and is the author of "Wild Birds of California," and the co-author of "Sierra Nevada Natural History." He is currently at work on a field guide to birds of the Sierra Nevada. David has traveled the world extensively, spending a year in Borneo as a member of the Harvard Research Team and in the Peruvian Amazon under the auspices of the Smithsonian Institution.
 
Frank Mullen

Frank Mullen was a senior reporter at the Reno Gazette-Journal and now teaches journalism classes at the University of Nevada Reno. He authored a year-long series of Gazette Journal articles in 1997, “The Donner Party Chronicles.” He has appeared on the History Channel’s “History’s Mysteries.” In his spare time, Frank has performed in the Great Basin Chautauqua and around the country, in such diverse characterizations as Babe Ruth, Henry VIII and Albert Einstein.
 
Frank Helling

Frank Helling is an active adventurer and naturalist who has spent much of his life “sauntering” in the footsteps of the great mountaineer, philosopher and nature writer John Muir. He has backpacked, hiked and climbed in the Sierras, Rockies, Cascades, Alps, Alaska, Hawaii and the deserts of the American Southwest. A former high school science teacher, Frank has also worked as a ranger and naturalist in Kings Canyon National Park and as a professional wilderness instructor.
 
Meals and Lodgings
   Hilton SFO Bayfront
  Burlingame, CA 1 night
   Holiday Inn Fresno
  Fresno, CA 2 nights
   Yosemite Lodge at the Falls
  Yosemite, CA 2 nights
   Courtyard Carson City
  Carson City, Nevada 3 nights
   Red Lion Inn Hotel Redding
  Redding, California 1 night
   Red Lion Hotel Eureka
  Eureka, California 2 nights
   Mendocino Hotel and Garden Suites
  Mendocino, California 2 nights
 Hilton SFO Bayfront
Type: Full Service Hotel
  Description: Hilton SFO Bayfront is located four miles from San Francisco Airport in the contemporary neighborhood of Burlingame, CA, a short drive from downtown San Francisco. The hotel offers inspiring views overlooking San Francisco Bay and nearby there's a scenic walking path where guests can enjoy a stroll along the Bay. The charming downtown section of Burlingame is filled with plenty of shopping and dining options.
  Contact info: 600 Airport Blvd.
Burlingame, CA 94010 USA
phone: 650-340-8500
web: www3.hilton.com/en/hotels/california/hilton-san-francisco-airport-bayfront-SFOAPHF/index.html
  Room amenities: All rooms are equipped with a hairdryer, coffee maker and tea service, iron/ironing board, arm chair with ottoman, clock radio with MP3 connection, non-allergenic feather pillows, safe, visual strobe for the hearing-impaired, bathroom amenities and telephone featuring auto wakeup, voicemail, and a dataport. Each guest room contains a 42 inch flat screen HDTV with complimentary HBO(R), in-room movie channels, on-demand movies, cable, CNN and ESPN. 24-hour housekeeping is standard and evening room service is available. Guests receive USA Today daily, Monday through Friday. INTERNET ACCESS: Complimentary wireless internet access in all guest rooms.
  Facility amenities: The Hilton SFO Bayfront is a 100% smoke-free hotel. It offers guests many fine amenities including the California culinary-inspired restaurant, Windows on the Bay, which provides beautiful views of San Francisco Bay. Guests can also enjoy their favorite cocktail in the relaxed atmosphere of the hotel's Lobby Lounge. The hotel features an indoor heated pool and a fitness center as well as a 24-hour business center. Laundry and dry cleaning services available. The hotel provides complimentary shuttle service to and from SFO and to downtown Burlingame. INTERNET ACCESS: Complimentary Wi-Fi internet access is available in the lobby PARKING: Complimentary parking is available for Road Scholar guests.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: Based on availability Call the hotel for current room rates, or go to http://www3.hilton.com/en/hotels/california/hilton-san-francisco-airport-bayfront-SFOAPHF/index.htmland enter dates that are before or after program, then go to menu on left side of screen and click on link at the bottom that says "Have a special code"; on the next screen enter the corporate account number: 2747104 and click update information. The Road Scholar preferred rates, if available, will be shown under the regular hotel rates.
  Check in time: 3:00 PM

 Holiday Inn Fresno
Type: Full Service Hotel
  Description: Nestled in Central California's scenic San Joaquin Valley, the Holiday Inn Fresno Airport hotel is a gateway to Sequoia/Kings Canyon and Yosemite National Parks. This full-service hotel is centrally located near the city's most exciting attractions, sports entertainment, universities, museums and shops.
  Contact info: 5090 East Clinton Way
Fresno, CA 93727 USA
phone: 559-252-3611
web: www.fresnoairporthi.com/
  Room amenities: The hotel has 210 contemporary guest rooms and suites, each equipped with 32" flat screen cable TVs, complimentary high speed wireless internet, coffee/tea makers, iron/ironing board, hair dryer, and complimentary toiletries.
  Facility amenities: The hotel features an indoor atrium heated pool and seasonal outdoor swimming pool, on-site restaurant and bar, and a modern fitness center. Additional amenities include a modern business center, room service, ATM machine, on-site laundry facilities and same-day dry cleaning service. There is no elevator to the second floor, however, the hotel provides 24-hour bell service to assist guests with luggage. WIRELESS INTERNET ACCESS: Complimentary high speed wireless internet is available throughout the hotel and in all guest rooms.
  Smoking allowed: No

 Yosemite Lodge at the Falls
Type: Lodge
  Description: As the closest property to Yosemite Falls, Yosemite Lodge at the Falls is an idyllic spot for families, group retreats and visitors seeking the comforts of a hotel after an exciting day exploring the wilderness. In 1998, the main complex was redesigned with an emphasis on glass and wood detailing to blend harmoniously with its surroundings. Landscaping of indigenous trees, shrubs and wildflowers further reflect the natural beauty of Yosemite Valley. An outdoor amphitheater located in the center of Yosemite Lodge at the Falls features nightly ranger/naturalist programs, slide presentations and scenic movies during the summer.
  Contact info: 9006 Yosemite Lodge Drive
Yosemite National Park, CA 95389 USA
phone: 209-372-1274
web: www.yosemitepark.com/yosemite-lodge.aspx
  Room amenities: Road Scholar participants will enjoy the comfort of the Lodge rooms which open to a patio or a balcony. All guest rooms have a private bathroom, dressing area, hair dryer, activity table, telephone and television with select programming. The bedding configuration is two double beds. The lodge offers daily maid service. No cooking is allowed in the rooms. Guest rooms do not have air conditioning. NOTE: Road Scholar participants MUST provide a credit card or cash deposit when checking in to cover any incidental expenses which may be incurred during their stay.
  Facility amenities: Yosemite Lodge at The Falls has a total of 249 rooms. It is composed of 226 "lodge rooms", 19 "standard rooms", and 4 "family rooms." Instead of having every room in a single building, the rooms are spread out over a total of 15 separate buildings, each with anywhere from nine to thirty-six rooms. There are 1 to 2 floors, depending on the building. NOTE: There are no elevators in any of the buildings. Guests must climb stairs to sleeping rooms on the 2nd floor. The Lodge offers an array of amenities and services to meet your needs. Casual dining is available at The Mountain Room Restaurant serving signature California cuisine such as steaks, seafood, chicken and pasta dishes. A full bar is also available. For cocktails and lighter fare, visit the adjacent Mountain Room Lounge. The Food Court offers hot and cold entrees and desserts for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The Coffee Corner, located in the Food Court, has a variety of hot and cold coffee and tea drinks, bagels and pastries, and hand-dipped ice cream. A laundromat is located by the shower house at Housekeeping Camp Services and is open all year from 8AM-10PM. YOSEMITE LODGE WI-FI INTERNET ACCESS: Wireless access is complimentary to all Yosemite Lodge guests upon check-in, including guest rooms and conference spaces. An ATM is located in the lobby near the tour desk. The Yosemite Lodge Gift Shop sells sundries, newspapers, gift items, magazines, books, posters, snacks, jewelry and apparel. The Nature Shop offers unique sculptures, original photographs by Yosemite's leading professionals, one-of-a-kind Native American art, as well as apparel, music and videos. A full-service post office, including parcel post, is available onsite. The Lodge offers a heated outdoor swimming pool that is open daily from Memorial Day through Labor Day, weather permitting. Free shuttle service to various locations in Yosemite Valley is accessible from Yosemite Lodge at the Falls.
  Smoking allowed: No

 Courtyard Carson City
Type: Hotel
  Contact info: 3870 S Carson St
Carson City, NV  89701 USA
phone: 775-887-9900
web: www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/rnocc-courtyard-carson-city/
  Room amenities: Guest rooms are fully equipped to meet guests' needs. Amenities in the guest rooms include: air conditioning, alarm clock, coffee maker/tea service, individual climate control, iron and ironing board, luxury bedding - crisp linens, thicker mattresses, custom comforters, fluffier pillows, mini fridge, pillows are either down/feather or foam, pull-out sofa bed, hair dryer, color TV, phone with voice mail, and wet bar. INTERNET ACCESS: Complimentary WiFi is available in each guest room.
  Facility amenities: This Courtyard Hotel is designed to accommodate guests and make them feel comfortable. The amenities available in the hotel include on-site coin operated laundry, newspaper in lobby, toll-free in-room phone calls, safe deposit boxes at the front desk, 24-hour exercise room, indoor pool and spa, and valet dry-cleaning. PARKING: Complimentary on-site parking available to guests. INTERNET ACCESS: Complimentary WiFi is available throughout the hotel.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes

 Red Lion Inn Hotel Redding
Type: Hotel
  Description: The Red Lion Hotel Redding is situated at the gateway to Northern California's recreational playground, just a short drive from some of California's most dramatic natural wonders including Mt. Shasta and the pristine Trinity Mountains. Mt. Lassen Volcanic State Park and the Sundial Bridge are only minutes away. The hotel is conveniently located near the downtown area, Redding Convention Center and Mt. Shasta Mall.
  Contact info: 1830 Hilltop Drive
Redding, CA 96002 USA
phone: 530-221-8700
web: www.redlion.com/our-hotels/california/redding/
  Room amenities: Guest rooms feature plush pillowtop beds, free wireless Internet access, work desk and chair, alarm clock/radio, coffee maker, iron with board, hairdryer, and Premium Cable or Satellite TV, and eco-friendly bath amenities.
  Facility amenities: The hotel has 192 spacious guest rooms with private balconies or patios and features a seasonal outdoor pool, whirlpool and fitness center. Additional amenities include an on-site restaurant, business services, complimentary newspapers in the lobby, same-day dry cleaning service, and a safe deposit box at the front desk. WIRELESS INTERNET ACCESS: The hotel offers complimentary Wi-Fi in guest rooms and public spaces within the hotel.
  Smoking allowed: No

 Red Lion Hotel Eureka
Type: Full Service Hotel
  Description: Conveniently located off Highway 101 near the towering Redwoods of Northern California, the Red Lion Hotel Eureka is ideally situated near the Pacific Ocean. The state and national Redwood parks are just minutes away. The hotel is within easy walking distance of the beautiful Victorian Seaport of Old Town Eureka, which is filled with boutique shops and art galleries.
  Contact info: 1929 Fourth Street
Eureka, CA 95501 USA
phone: 707-445-0844
web: www.redlion.com/our-hotels/california/eureka/
  Room amenities: The spacious guest rooms are furnished with comfortable pillowtop beds. Amenities include free wireless Internet access, work desk and chair, alarm clock/radio, coffee maker, refrigerator, microwave, iron/ironing board, hairdryer and Premium Cable or Satellite TV. Eco-Friendly bath amenities are provided.
  Facility amenities: The Red Lion Hotel has 175 spacious guest rooms and features an outdoor pool, whirlpool and fitness center, room service, on-site ATM, and same-day laundry and dry cleaning valet service. The hotel restaurant, the Pacific Grill, serves distinctive Northwest cuisine. Complimentary newspapers are available in the lobby. WIRELESS INTERNET ACCESS: The hotel offers complimentary Wi-Fi throughout the facility including all guest rooms.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes

 Mendocino Hotel and Garden Suites
Type: Hotel
  Description: The Mendocino Hotel, a restored Victorian building with beautiful antiques and two award-winning restaurants, is situated in the picturesque village of Mendocino overlooking the Pacific Ocean and Mendocino Headlands. Located on the rugged North Coast of California, about 4 hours north of San Francisco, it is part of the highly scenic Andersen Valley, home of over three dozen boutique wineries. The hotel and town of only 1200 inhabitants is registered in the National Historic Trust.
  Contact info: 45080 Main Street
Mendocino, CA 95460 USA
phone: 800-548-0513
web: www.mendocinohotel.com
  Room amenities: The hotel's 51 guest rooms were renovated in 2006 and are equipped with hair dryers, phones, irons/ ironing boards, and cozy down comforters. Many have balconies and fireplaces. INTERNET ACCESS: Complimentary Wi-Fi in guest rooms.
  Facility amenities: This full-service hotel, located in the heart of the Mendocino Historic Preservation District, offers Concierge and 24-hour Front Desk service; bellman service from 8AM till 9PM; room service from 8AM till 9PM; free daily copy of the New York Times Digest; safe deposit boxes; on-site parking; and in-house massage and spa services situated on two acres of lush Victorian gardens. Guests will also enjoy the on-site Mendocino Creamery Ice Cream Parlor. The Mendocino Hotel features two award-winning restaurants and a bar which offer guests a choice of casual, bistro, or fine dining as well as a heated outdoor garden terrace. The Mendocino Hotel has been a recipient of the Award of Excellence from WINE SPECTATOR for the past eleven consecutive years. INTERNET ACCESS: High-speed wireless Internet access is available in the lobby area. PARKING: Complimentary parking is available for hotel guests.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Additional nights after: Please call hotel. The hotel is usually fully booked on weekends. Participants should ask for the best available rate and use their AAA or AARP membership if applicable.
  Check out time: 12:00 PM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Registration is between 4:00-5:00 p.m. in the hotel lobby. Orientation begins at 5:30 p.m., dinner at 6:00 p.m. with self introductions at 7:00 p.m. You will be staying at Hilton SFO Bayfront that night.
  End of Program:
Program ends at approximately 3:00 p.m. with drop-off at SFO International Airport and the Hilton SFO Hotel in Burlingame. Flights should be scheduled after 6 p.m. in case of delays and security. You will be staying at Mendocino Hotel and Garden Suites the night before.
  Required documents:
The Participant Information Form is required. On the enclosed Participant Information Form (PIF), please indicate to us the name of your roommate/traveling companion. Also let us know if you are traveling with other individuals and wish to be assigned a room near them. Photo ID
  Parking availability:
If you are driving to the program and wish to park your car at the hotel for the duration of the program, the Hilton SFO Bayfront Hotel in Burlingame provides complimentary parking for Road Scholar participants for up to 14 days.
Transportation
To Start of Program
  Location:  Burlingame, CA
  Nearest city or town:  San Francisco, CA
  Nearest highway: US Hwy 101
  Nearest airport:  San Francisco International
  From End of Program
  Location: Burlingame, CA
    (Additional transportation information same as above)
Travel Details
 

San Francisco Airport to Hilton SFO hotel

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Hotel Shuttle
Hilton SFO Bayfront Hotel Van
phone: 650-340-8500

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Complimentary hotel shuttle
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

15 minutes from SFO to the hotel 

 

Distance:

 

4 miles from SFO to the hotel

   

The hotel shuttle runs every 20 minutes. Exit SFO on Departure level and cross intersection to wait for shuttle to come by within 20 minutes. Look for black shuttle which reads, HILTON SAN FRANCISCO AIRPORT BAYFRONT/EMBASSY SUITES. ALTERNATE TRANSPORTATION from SFO: Taxis depart from the designated taxi zones located at the roadway center islands on the Arrivals/Baggage Claim Level of all terminals.

 

Oakland Airport to Hilton SFO hotel

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
SuperShuttle
phone: 800-258-3826
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Around $43 one-way, but check current rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

Approx. 45 minutes 

 

Distance:

 

29 miles from Oakland Airport to hotel

   

SuperShuttle offers shared van service from Oakland Airport to the hotel. Advance reservations are recommended. Call 800-258-3826 or visit www.supershuttle.com for online reservations and rates.

 
Driving Directions
  From San Franciso International Airport to Hilton SFO hotel Exit airport 101 South towards San Jose. Take Broadway/Burlingame exit. Take 2nd right to overpass to other side of freeway. At the first light turn right and at the next light, turn left onto Airport Blvd. Hilton hotel is approximately one mile ahead at 600 Airport Blvd.
  From the East to Hilton SFO Hotel Take Highway 80 West to Highway 101 South. Proceed southbound on US Highway 101. Travel past San Francisco Airport to the Broadway/Burlingame Exit. Take the second right and travel over the freeway overpass to the other side of the freeway. At the first light turn right and at the next light, turn left onto Airport Blvd. The hotel is approximately one mile ahead.
  From the North to Hilton SFO Hotel Proceed southbound on US Highway 101. Travel past San Francisco Airport to the Broadway/Burlingame Exit. Take the second right and travel over the freeway overpass to the other side of the freeway. At the first light turn right and at the next light, turn left onto Airport Blvd. The hotel is approximately one mile ahead.
  From the South to Hilton SFO Hotel Travel northbound on US Highway 101. Exit onto Anza Boulevard. Turn right at the traffic light onto Airport Boulevard. The hotel is approximately one quarter mile ahead on the left.
Elevation Note: Sequoia, Yosemite and Lassen National Parks, and Lake Tahoe elevations will exceed 3000' up to 9000'

The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Arrival and Check-in / Registration / Orientation / Welcome Dinner
(Sunday, June 14)

Note: Note: Hotel check-in is available from 3:00 p.m.



   
 Afternoon: Program Registration: After you have your room assignment, come over to the Road Scholar table to register with the program staff and get your welcome packet containing your name-tag, up-to-date schedule that reflects any last-minute changes, and other important information. If you arrive late, please ask for your packet when you check in.

The Group Leader will greet everyone and review the program theme, the up-to-date daily schedule and any changes, discuss safety guidelines, emergency procedures, roles and responsibilities, and answer any questions you may have.

Indicated times are approximate. Program activities, schedules, and personnel may need to change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. All transportation will be via private motor coach unless specified otherwise. Thank you for your understanding.

We have set aside some free time in the schedule for your personal independent exploration. The Group Leader will often be available during free time to accompany informal excursions, activities, or meals that have been excluded from the program cost. You are welcome to join if you like, with any associated costs on your own.
 Dinner: In our private room at the hotel, enjoy a plated meal with salad, entrée, rolls and butter, dessert, plus coffee, tea, and water; Other beverages available for purchase.
 Evening: Get to know your fellow participants in a session we call Crossing Points and discover what you share beyond a love of lifelong learning. Settle in and get a good night’s rest for the day ahead.
   
Accommodations: Hilton SFO Bayfront
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Transfer to Fresno / San Juan Bautista / San Luis Reservoir / John Muir Presentation
(Monday, June 15)

Note: Note: Getting on/off the motor coach.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in hotel dining room offers a selection of eggs, bacon, sausage, breakfast potatoes, hot and cold cereals, fruit, yogurts, and fresh baked breakfast breads, plus assorted juices, coffee, tea, and water.
 Morning: We’ll board our private motor coach for trip to Fresno, California. Our first stop is a visit to the Mission and State Park at San Juan Bautista led by a senior park aide. The park is part of a nationally recognized historic landmark adjacent to a portion of California's 15th Spanish era mission. This mission was one of four established in the summer of 1797 and the fifteenth of the twenty-one missions in Alta, California.
 Lunch: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy what you like. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.
 Afternoon: We continue our trip with a stop at San Luis Reservoir, beginning our exploration of water issues in California. The dam was constructed as a storage reservoir for the federal Central Valley Project and the California State Water Project. It stores runoff water from the Delta that would otherwise flow into the ocean.
 Dinner: In the dining room at the hotel, enjoy a buffet dinner including salad, entrée, rolls and butter, with dessert, plus water, coffee, and tea; Other beverages are available for purchase.
 Evening: Enjoy a living history presentation with John Muir in the dining room. He was a naturalist and seen as an essential figure in the fight for the preservation of wilderness areas. He led the petition for the National Park bill in 1890, establishing Yosemite and Sequoia National Park.
   
Accommodations: Holiday Inn Fresno
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 3: All Day Field Trip to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
(Tuesday, June 16)

Note: Note: Walking distance up to 1/2 mile on mostly even terrain with some stairs.



   
 Breakfast: At the Skyline Cafe in the hotel, enjoy a buffet with eggs, assorted toast, fresh fruit, cereals, yogurt, waffles, and more, plus fruit juice, coffee, tea, milk, and water.
 Morning: We begin our field trip to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks with our knowledgeable on-board instructor. We will visit the General Sherman Tree and Grant Grove. Estimated to be between 2,300–2,700 years old, the General Sherman Tree is the largest currently living tree in the world. Sequoia National Park was established in 1890 and encompasses a vertical relief of nearly 13,000 feet with the highest point in the lower 48 states, Mount Whitney. The park is south of and contiguous with Kings Canyon National Park.
 Lunch: Picnic style box lunch at Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park. Lunch items will include sandwich, chips, fruit, cookie, and bottled water.
 Afternoon: We continue our field trip in Kings Canyon National Park. Although Congress created these two parks at different times, Sequoia and Kings Canyon share miles of boundary and are managed as one park. Sequoia was the second national park designated in this country after Yellowstone National Park in 1872.
 Dinner: At the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Holiday Inn Fresno
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Transfer to Yosemite National Park / Pioneer Village History Center / Yosemite Valley
(Wednesday, June 17)

Note: Note: The walk around Pioneer Village is on uneven, dirt terrain. The flat paved loop at Lower Yosemite Falls is about 1 mile roundtrip.



   
 Breakfast: At the Skyline Cafe.
 Morning: We’ll depart Fresno to visit our next national park; Yosemite.
 Lunch: At the historic Wawona Hotel, enjoy a plated lunch with salad, bread and butter, entrée with sides, and dessert. Coffee, tea, milk, and water included; Other beverages are available for purchase.

The Wawona Hotel, a National Historic Landmark, rests upon verdant meadows and beside rushing streams. The tranquility of this Victorian-style lodge in Yosemite makes it a favorite of those who prefer a relaxed environment and the gracious charm of a bygone era.
 Afternoon: With our naturalist, we'll visit the Pioneer Village History Center near Wawona Hotel. This ‘village’ is assembled from structures that were originally found in different locations throughout the park and moved to Wawona in the 1950’s and 60’s. Each building represents a different chapter in Yosemite’s story.

We board the motor coach and continue to Yosemite Valley with a stop at Tunnel View for a photo op of the world famous view of the Valley.
 Dinner: At Yosemite Lodge Food Court. Dinner coupons will be used to purchase hot or cold entrées, pasta dishes, grilled items, pizzas, sandwiches, salads, etc at different stations. Assorted beverages available such as milk, soft drinks, coffee, tea and water. Alcohol is available for purchase.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Yosemite Lodge at the Falls
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: All Day Field Trip to Yosemite National Park
(Thursday, June 18)

Note: Note: The walk into the El Capitan Meadow is on a dirt path in a flat meadow and the distance is about 100-150 ft. The walk to the base of Bridalveil Fall is 1 mile roundtrip, but up a steep trail with some uneven terrain. Happy Isles Trail is 1/2 mile round trip on even ground.



   
 Breakfast: A breakfast buffet in Lodge dining room. Meal will include an assortment of muffins and baked goods, scrambled eggs, breakfast potatoes, fresh fruit salad, bacon, sausage, French toast or waffles, hot or cold cereals, coffee, tea, juice, and water.
 Morning: Our on-board instructor leads us on a field trip through Yosemite Valley which is world-famous for its impressive waterfalls, cliffs and unusual rock formations.

First stop is El Capitan Meadow for a straight up view of El Capitan, a favorite for experienced rock climbers. Rising more than 3,000 feet above the Valley floor, it is the largest monolith of granite in the world.

Our next stop is Bridalveil Fall. At more than 600 feet tall, it is one of the most prominent falls in Yosemite. Some Native American tribes believe it to be the home to a vengeful spirit and that those who look directly into the waterfall will be cursed.

Afterwards, in the central valley, we'll visit the Sentinel Bridge and Cook’s Meadow area. Sentinel Bridge is famous for its upstream view of the Half Dome. As you walk through Cook’s Meadow, enjoy views of Yosemite Falls, Half Dome, and Sentinel Rock. The meadow is named after John J, Cook, who owned a hotel in Yosemite Valley in the 1880’s and often grazed cattle there.
 Lunch: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy what you like. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.

Dining options will be listed in the “Yosemite Guide”, the park newspaper which is published several times a year. You may view a current copy of the newspaper online at http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/guide.htm
 Afternoon: We’ll ride the free Yosemite Valley Shuttle bus from Yosemite Lodge at the Falls to Happy Isles, a pair of islands in the Merced River at the east end of Yosemite Valley. Starting from the Happy Isles trailhead, we’ll walk the trail with a naturalist.
 Dinner: At the Garden Terrace Room, Yosemite Lodge at the Falls. A dinner buffet will include various items such as salads, fish, chicken, rice, potatoes, and a selection of desserts and beverages.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Yosemite Lodge at the Falls
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 6: Tioga Pass / Transfer to Carson City / Mono Lake
(Friday, June 19)

Note: Note: Walking distances up to 1/2 mile on even terrain. Tioga Pass elevation is 9,943 feet.



   
 Breakfast: At Yosemite Lodge at the Falls.
 Morning: We’ll begin our trip across Yosemite's high country over Tioga Pass which serves as the eastern entry point for Yosemite National Park. It is the highest highway pass in California and in the Sierra Nevada. The view from Olmsted Point looks southwest into Yosemite. Tenaya Lake offers an opportunity to stretch our legs and take in the gorgeous views from its shore. We continue through Tuolumne Meadows, a gentle, dome-studded section along the Tuolumne River.
 Lunch: Picnic style box lunch at Mono Lake County Park including a sandwich, chips, fruit, trail mix, and bottled water.
 Afternoon: After lunch, visit Mono Lake Visitors Center, an oasis in the dry Great Basin and a vital habitat for millions of migratory and nesting birds. Mono Lake is unique. For starters, it's old--at least 700,000 years old and one of the oldest continuously existing lakes on the continent. Fed by huge glaciers during the last Ice Age, Mono Lake was 60 times larger than the 66 square miles it covers today. Mono Lake is naturally salty and alkaline because it has no outlet. The only way water leaves is via evaporation.

We’ll continue to Carson City, Nevada's territorial and state capital, which has a rich and colorful frontier past. Carson City was founded as a community in 1858, seven years after the first settlement of Eagle Station trading post in 1851. Carson City is named for the famous frontiersman and scout Christopher "Kit" Carson.
 Dinner: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy what you like. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Courtyard Carson City
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 7: Free Morning / Nevada State Museum / Virginia City / Fourth Ward School / Donner Party Lecture
(Saturday, June 20)

Note: Note: Walking distances up to 1/4 mile on even but rough terrain; Steep steps to the Fourth Ward School.



   
 Breakfast: At the Courtyard Carson City Bistro in the hotel, order from the menu using a voucher. Choose from options including hot and cold breakfast cereals, fresh fruit, smoothies, and a variety of cooked breakfast items. Coffee, tea, water, and juice are available.
 Morning: Take this opportunity for personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. Feel free to write postcards or do laundry either at the hotel or at a local laundromat with transportation provided by the bus.
 Lunch: Enjoy a full buffet at one of Carson City’s casinos offering salad, choices of main entrées, garlic bread, fresh fruit, and coffee, tea, and water.
 Afternoon: Take a field trip to the Nevada State Museum which was originally erected in 1870 as the U.S. Mint, and coined more than $49,000,000 until 1893. Now a museum, it hosts about 250,000 visitors each year.

Then it's on to Virginia City, one of the largest National Historical Landmarks in the country. The city held the attention of the world with its mining industry for more than half a century, pouring over $700 million in gold and silver into an ever-expanding nation.

We’ll visit the Fourth Ward School, which is the last school standing of its kind. Originally holding over 1000 students grates 1 through 9, walk in their footsteps through the authentically preserved 1876 Victorian school building. Sit in the same wooden desks as the children and teachers did from 1876 to 1936.
 Dinner: At a local restaurant, order from the menu using a voucher.
 Evening: At the hotel, we’ll be joined for a lecture by an author on the Donner Party, who will share their dramatic story with us. A group of American pioneers that set out for California, their journey descended into chaos when they spent the winter of 1846-47 snowbound in the Sierra Nevadas. Historians describe the party as one of the largest tragedies in the history of westward migration.
   
Accommodations: Courtyard Carson City
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8: Taylor Creek / Mt. Tallac / Lunch Cruise on Lake Tahoe / Heavenly Valley Gondola Ride
(Sunday, June 21)

Note: Note: Walking distances up to 1/2 mile on even terrain.



   
 Breakfast: At the Courtyard Carson City Bistro.
 Morning: Hop on the motor coach for the Lake Tahoe Basin where we will meet our instructor at Taylor Creek. We’ll visit the Taylor Creek Stream Chamber and the Mt. Tallac Historic Site.

Taylor Creek serves as a hub on the south shore of Lake Tahoe for many hiking trails around the area. The Stream Chamber, located just down the trail, features a 180 degree diorama depicting life above and below the water.

Mt. Tallac Historic Site used to be the summer retreat of the San Francisco socialite, but today the estate remains as a memory of the significant era in Tahoe’s history.
 Lunch: Enjoy a plated lunch on the Dixie Queen boat offering an entrée size salad and dinner roll with coffee, tea, or soda as included beverages while cruising across Lake Tahoe.
 Afternoon: Enjoy an afternoon cruise on the Dixie Queen across the lake to the famous Emerald Bay. See Tahoe's classic blue skies, deeper blue lake, snow-capped mountains, alpine forests and the area's wide array of cultural and historical riches that are among the great sightseeing pleasures of the world.

Complete our exploration of the Tahoe Basin with a gondola ride at Heavenly Valley for a spectacular view of the Lake Tahoe Basin.
 Dinner: Enjoy a buffet dinner at a S Lake Tahoe hotel offering soups and salads, several entrée choices and a dessert, plus water, coffee, and tea; Other beverages will be available for purchase.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Courtyard Carson City
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: Lassen National Park / Loomis Museum / Transfer to Redding / Sun Dial Bridge
(Monday, June 22)

Note: Note: Walking distances up to 1 mile on flat, even terrain; Hike to Lily Pond Trail is 1 mile, hilly, dirt terrain.



   
 Breakfast: At the Courtyard Carson City Bistro.
 Morning: We’ll take a field trip to Lassen Volcanic National Park to witness a brief moment in the ancient battle between the earth shaping forces of creation and destruction in Northern California. Although Lassen is primarily known for its volcanic geology, the park boasts a rich diversity of plant and animal life. Originally two separate national monuments, designated by President Theodore Roosevelt; Lassen is dominated by Lassen Peak, the world’s largest plug dome volcano.
 Lunch: At Lassen National Park Visitors Center Café with a choice of sandwich, fruit, chips, cookie, and bottled water.
 Afternoon: We continue our drive through the park, stopping at the Loomis Museum for a ranger lecture and to view exhibits featuring photos by B.F. Loomis, who documented Lassen Peak's most recent eruption cycle and promoted the park's establishment. The visit will be followed by a walk on the nearby Lily Pond Nature Trail.
 Dinner: At a local restaurant enjoy a full buffet offering an assorted number of entrées, sides, desserts, plus water, coffee, and tea.
 Evening: We’ll visit Turtle Bay Park and Sundial Bridge. The Sundial Bridge at Turtle Bay crosses the Sacramento River in the heart of Redding. Having opened July 4, 2004, the bridge links the north and south campuses of Turtle Bay Exploration Park. In addition to being a functional work of art, the Sundial Bridge is a technical marvel as well. Renowned Spanish architect and engineer Santiago Calatrava conceived the Sundial Bridge’s unusual design, his first free-standing bridge in the United States.
   
Accommodations: Red Lion Inn Hotel Redding
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 10: Shasta Dam / Transfer to Eureka / Weaverville / J. J. Jackson Memorial Museum
(Tuesday, June 23)

Note: Note: Walking distances up to 1 mile on even terrain with a slight incline.



   
 Breakfast: At hotel enjoy a buffet offering assorted breads and bagels, scrambled eggs, bacon and sausage, potatoes, hot and cold cereals, fresh fruit, plus coffee, tea, juice, and milk.
 Morning: After our ride, we’ll explore Shasta Dam, a curved gravity concrete dam on the Sacramento River above Redding built between 1938 and 1945, with our Reclamation Guide.

Like Hoover Dam, it was a continuous pour concrete project, and in its day, ranked as one of the great civil engineering feats of the world. We depart and continue west to Weaverville, a historic Gold Rush town, nestled at the base of the magnificent Trinity Alps Wilderness area. The Old West did live large in Weaverville with gunfights, saloons and even bank robberies by notorious figures like Black Bart.
 Lunch: Enjoy a plated lunch at a local restaurant. Choice of entree with dessert and choice of beverage.
 Afternoon: Take this opportunity for personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.

Admission to the J.J. Jackson Museum is prepaid by group leader.
 Dinner: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy what you like. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.
 Evening: At leisure
   
Accommodations: Red Lion Hotel Eureka
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 11: Redwood National Park Visitor's Center / Prairie Creek State Park / Patrick's Point State Park / Trinidad Harbor / Evening Activity
(Wednesday, June 24)

Note: Note: Walking distances up to 1 1/2 miles on dirt terrain with slight inclines.



   
 Breakfast: At hotel in the breakfast room, enjoy a buffet offering assorted breads and bagels, scrambled eggs, bacon and sausage, potatoes, hot and cold cereals, fresh fruit, plus water, coffee, tea, juice, and milk.
 Morning: Board the motor coach for the field trip to Redwood National Park and Prairie Creek State Park with our knowledgeable local historian and author. Our first stop is the Visitor's Center at Redwood National Park to view a film and exhibits. The ancient coast redwood ecosystem preserved in the parks contains some of the planet's most majestic forests. Prairie Creek State Park was set aside in the early 1920’s and is a sanctuary of old growth coast redwood. We'll hope to spot some of the Roosevelt elk who call the park and this northern California area their home.
 Lunch: Picnic style box lunch in Patrick's Point State Park at Visitor Center picnic tables . Lunch will include an entrée size salad, cookie, and bottled water.
 Afternoon: Our field trip continues to Patrick's Point State Park, with dense forests of spruce, hemlock, pine, fir, and red alder stretching over an ocean headland. We’ll visit the recreated Yurok seasonal village - "Sumêg" - consisting of traditional style family houses, a sweat house, changing houses, a redwood canoe, and a dance house.

On the return to Eureka, we'll visit picturesque Trinidad Harbor. Trinidad is California's smallest incorporated city, with a population of 360 in 2013. It is noted for its spectacular coastline and remarkable offshore rocks.

Back in Eureka, drive through the Victorian Historic District and view the Carson Mansion. Built for lumber baron William Carson in the 1880’s, it is perhaps the most famous example of Victorian Architecture in the United States. This famous house has been the inspiration for haunted houses around the country and the clock tower on the Disneyland train station.
 Dinner: At Samoa Cookhouse, the last surviving cookhouse in the West, serving food - lumber camp style. Meal will include soup, salad, bread, entrée, vegetables, and dessert, plus water, coffee, and tea.
 Evening: Visit the Historic Lodging Museum, which is full of relics and photographs from the old logging and Cookhouse days before returning to the hotel.
   
Accommodations: Red Lion Hotel Eureka
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 12: Transfer to Mendocino / Ferndale / Humboldt Redwood State Park
(Thursday, June 25)

Note: Note: Walking distances up to 1/2 mile on both even and uneven terrain.



   
 Breakfast: In the hotel breakfast room.
 Morning: Travel to Ferndale and step back in time as we view the magnificently preserved Victorian architecture. On the National Register of Historic Places, Ferndale's Main Street is a photographer's paradise. This small city, with its exquisite storefronts and homes, is considered the gateway to California’s Lost Coast.

We continue to Humboldt Redwoods State Park where we’ll meet our park ranger for a short walk in the redwoods. Located along the Eel River, Humboldt Redwoods State Park contains some of the world's most majestic ancient redwood groves.
 Lunch: At the Visitor Center picnic tables, enjoy a box lunch including a sandwich, chips, fruit, cookie, and bottled water, while surrounded by the beautiful redwoods.
 Afternoon: Heading to Mendocino, we journey west to the California coast and travel south on breath-taking Hwy. 1. Despite its small size, the town's scenic location on a headland surrounded by the Pacific Ocean has made it extremely popular as an artist colony and vacationers. Many of its early settlers were New Englanders, as was true with many older Northern California towns. Its economy declined after 1940, and it became a somewhat isolated village until discovered by the region's art community. It has been the setting for numerous films including "Same Time Next Year" and "The Russians Are Coming" as well as the popular TV series "Murder She Wrote."
 Dinner: In Garden Room at the Mendocino Hotel, enjoy a plated meal with salad, entrée, dessert plus, coffee, tea, and water; Other beverages are available for purchase.
 Evening: At leisure
   
Accommodations: Mendocino Hotel and Garden Suites
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 13: Point Cabrillo Lighthouse / Mendocino Botanical Gardens / Lecture on Pomo Indians
(Friday, June 26)

Note: Note: Walking distances up to 1/4 mile.



   
 Breakfast: In Garden Room at the Mendocino Hotel, plated meal offering fruit, entrée, plus juice, milk, coffee, tea, and water.
 Morning: We board the motor coach our day’s field trips. First stop is the Point Cabrillo Lighthouse. Because of the increased demand to ship lumber to San Francisco after the destruction in 1906, Congress appropriated $50,000 for a lighthouse on Point Cabrillo. Added to the National Register of Historical Places in 1991, the lighthouse remains as one of the most complete lighthouses in the country.

We’ll return to Mendocino and visit the Botanical Gardens, which are the only public gardens in the continental U.S. that sits directly on the Pacific Ocean. The mild maritime climate makes it a garden for all seasons, attracting gardeners and nature lovers alike. Considered one of the top gardens in the country, it includes more than 30 acres of flowers and trees and over 150 species of birds.
 Lunch: Picnic lunch allows you to explore the gardens at your leisure. Provided by the onsite café, lunch will include sandwich, side salad, cookie and bottled water.
 Afternoon: We’ll be joined by a local expert for a lecture on the Pomo people indigenous to Northern California.

Take the rest of the afternoon for personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.
 Dinner: In the Garden Room at the Mendocino Hotel
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Mendocino Hotel and Garden Suites
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 14: Transfer to San Francisco / Program Concludes
(Saturday, June 27)

Note: Note: Hotel check-out by 12:00 Noon.



   
 Breakfast: In the Garden Room at the Mendocino Hotel
 Morning: Depart Mendocino for the return trip to San Francisco.
 Lunch: En route to SFO and Burlingame enjoy a plated lunch offering salad, garlic bread, choice of entrée, dessert, plus water, coffee, and tea; Other beverages will be available for purchase.
 Afternoon: When returning to the Hilton Hotel in Burlingame, an additional stop will be made at San Francisco Airport for those who would like to be dropped off at the airport instead of the hotel. This concludes our program.

We hope you enjoy all your Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. We encourage you to join our Facebook page and share photos of your program. Visit us at www.facebook.com/rsadventures. Best wishes for all your journeys!
   
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Free Time Opportunities
 
  Mendocino, California Mendocino Visitors Guide
From the coastal villages and windswept cliffs of Highway 1 to the cozy inns and luxury spas sprinkled among towering redwoods and the wine country, learn more about the beauties of Mendocino County, CA when you visit this website where you can order a copy of the ultimate Mendocino County Insiders Visitors Guide. For additional information, visit www.mendocinovisitors.com
  Yosemite, CA Yosemite/DNC Parks & Resorts
This site is managed by the park's primary concessioner, DNC Parks & Resorts at Yosemite, and provides the most current information on lodging, dining and activities inside the park. For additional information, visit http://www.yosemitepark.com
  Fresno, CA Fresno Convention and Visitors Bureau
1550 E. Shaw Ave. Suite 101

Fresno, CA 93710

Phone 800-788-0836

Learn more about California's sixth largest city which also serves as a gateway to the state's most spectacular national parks--Kings Canyon, Yosemite, and Sequoia National Park--as well as local tourism informaiton. For additional information, visit http://playfresno.org

  Eureka, California Eureka Chamber of Commerce
2112 Broadway

Eureka, CA 95501

Phone: 707-442-3738

Learn more about the Victorian seaport City of Eureka and the rich cultural and historic character of the area. Download or view the online Visitor Guide that's fileld with current tourist information. For additional information, visit http://eurekachamber.com/

  Carson City, Nevada Carson City Convention and Visitors Bureau
Request or view the Carson City Visitor Planner online. The website is packed with information about historic, cultural and natural attractions in the Silver State of Nevada as well as lodging, restaurant and entertainment info. Participants will have the opportunity to visit the state capital buildings and several nearby casinos during their stay in Carson City. For additional information, visit http://www.visitcarsoncity.com
  Burlingame, CA San Francisco Visitor Information Center
900 Market Street

San Francisco, CA 94102

Phone: (415) 391-2000

This is a well-designed website featuring an online Visitor's Guide and packed with information about lodging, restaurants, attractions and San Francisco's diverse and colorful neighborhoods. For additional information, visit http://www.sanfrancisco.travel/

  San Mateo County Convention & Visitors Bureau
111 Anza Blvd., Ste. 410

Burlingame, CA 94010

Order your free Visitor's Guide to the San Mateo County/Silicon Valley area, which is located on a 60-mile peninsula immediately south of San Francisco. It's bordered on the east by San Francisco Bay, and on the west by the Pacific Ocean and encompasses over 450 square miles. Order your free guide online or by calling (800) 288-4748. For additional information, visit http://www.smccvb.com/

Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


Early Mendocino Coast (Images of America: California)


Author: Katie M. Tahia


Description: Sorting through thousands of images in Mendocino County photo historian Robert Lee's collection and exploring the resources of the Mendocino County Museum, and other sites, historian Katy M. Tahja allows viewers to see the Mendocino coast of 100 years ago.



Sequoia & Kings Canyon: The Story Behind the Scenery


Author: William C. Tweed


Description: This book explores the realm of the giant sequoias, the largest living things on earth, from sequoia botany to the geology, history, and wildlife of both parks.



Park Profiles: Yosemite


Author: National Geographic


Description: Author Kenneth Brower details the captivating variety of Yosemite's plants and animals, chronicles how rivers of ice shaped the valley and relates the saga of the park through its first one hundred years.



Lassen Volcanic: The Story Behind the Scenery


Author: Ellis Richard, Mary Lu Moore


Description: This book is considered an oustanding introduction to Lassen National Park in which the author (a former Lassen National Park ranger) tells the human, geological and botanical story of the park area in an entertaining way.



Lake Tahoe: A Fragile Beauty


Author: Thomas Bachand


Description: Thomas Bachand's stunning photographs of Lake Tahoe document a gorgeous, and changing, environment. Bachand's work reveals the delicate balance between conservation and recreation as images of both majestic landscapes and development are juxtaposed.



The Wild Trees


Author: Richard Preston


Description: In The Wild Trees, Richard Preston unfolds the spellbinding story of Steve Sillett, Marie Antoine, and the tiny group of daring botanists and amateur naturalists that dared to climb and explore the unknown and hauntingly beautiful world hidden in the canopy of the giant redwood trees.



Roar and the Silence: A History of Virginia City


Author: Ronald M. James


Description: Ronald James's brilliant account of the Comstock's long and eventful history examines every aspect of Comstock and Virginia City and employs information gleaned from hundreds of written sources, interviews, archeological research, computer analysis, folklore, gender studies, physical geography, and architectural and art history.



Mountains of California


Author: John Muir


Description: "The Mountains of California was John Muir's first book, published in 1894, and was an instant success. This book contains not just some of the best nature writing, but for its vividness, immediacy and vision some of the best writing in English in any genre." ~ Martin Dickson





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