Dramatic Views from the Road Home

two lane road with vibrant green grass on either side and a dark sky with brightly lit clouds and fog after a rain.

Alderpoint Road Drama [Photo by Todd Gregory]

The road home is a trek, an exercise in time, driving skills, and patience. It’s also a therapy session, 30 minutes of untangling as I return to the nest.

I often wonder how many times I’ve traveled the road to Alderpoint.

As a child, ‘going over the hill’ was a weekly voyage to Garberville in the backseat of my mom’s Chevy Blazer. Town was a treat, new people, new sights, and if we were good and there was extra money, maybe a coveted toy. The small town was big to my little eyes.

Eventually it became my Monday through Friday commute to school in the flat-nosed high school bus. Big changes at a school that, at first, felt like I could get lost in, kids I’d never met, a routine I didn’t know, coming from my three-classroom school nestled in the hills between Alderpoint and Blocksburg.

On the bus, as the sun crested the mountains, I had the familiar faces of my youth for the 90-minute ride to prepare for a day among strangers, and 90-minutes to shed the day away as the seats slowly emptied as we headed home.

When I learned to drive it was an exercise in survival, a constant vigil against imagined threats lurking around each bend. I learned to hug the ditch and place my tire as far to the right as it would go without dropping off the road. Defensive driving, my mom called it, as she cursed under her breath with each near miss.

The potholes, like stubborn landmarks, dictated their own route, forcing me to navigate afresh with each trip. Memorizing the optimal zigzag pattern became second nature, minimizing the jolts and rattles of the journey. A single misstep invited a litany of parental admonitions, each hit pothole a testament to my reckless abandon.

Yet, despite the pitfalls, I yearned for the driver’s seat with each outing.

When I finally moved to town, my path reversed. I headed east to visit, and back over the hill to go home… only home has always been on the other side of the mountain, no matter where I choose to reside.

Today, my travels are less frequent, the potholes less familiar, but the undulating contours of the mountain still welcome me with open arms. The road, winding its way from the South Fork to the Main Stem of the Eel, captivates with distant vistas of the Yolla Bolly range to the east and the King Range to the west. Sunrises and sunsets paint the sky in breathtaking hues, momentarily blinding and enchanting me.

Through fog and snow, the road home remains etched in my memory, an internal compass guiding me back no matter the passage of time.

Pitted and winding, with treacherous drops and tire-devouring holes aplenty, the road home will forever hold a special place in my heart.

This bit of nostalgia was inspired by the above photo of Alderpoint Road by Todd Gregory. Todd has a way of capturing the enchanting views of home that takes my breath away. To see our home through Todd Gregory’s lens, follow him on Instagram

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farfromputin
Member
farfromputin
18 days ago

Thanks for a moment of tranquility. Alderpoint can blow a tire and/or a rim while in a dreamy thought. Safe travels.

farfromputin
Member
farfromputin
18 days ago
Reply to  farfromputin

Greatttt photooo!

Tracy F
Guest
Tracy F
18 days ago

Beautiful story Lisa, with a beautiful photo. Thank you! I love the constant of the journey, throughout time reflected.

The Real Guest
Guest
The Real Guest
18 days ago

🤔🧐,

Nice view of the Garberville Airport…

Sort of…

Kinda obscure…

🤷‍♂️

Pat Bitton
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Pat Bitton
17 days ago

I’ve never driven that road but the concept holds true, no matter where home is – at least it does for me.

tru matters
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tru matters
17 days ago

You have such a beautiful way with words Lisa.
Thank you.

Bonnie
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Bonnie
17 days ago

Fabulous photo. I loved the panorama views that I saw in my 21 years at Pratt Mt. Lookout. They will be etched in my memory forever. I know that turn, and wow it is so beautiful in your photo.

Dot
Member
Dot
17 days ago

Yes! All the mountain back roads of Humboldt/Trinity speak to my soul. The drive to town – vistas of rolling hills marching out the river canyons, through the redwoods to the sea… and home through the redwoods, along the river and up into the mountains… we never tire of it .

Kicking Bull
Guest
Kicking Bull
17 days ago

The school bus drivers around here amaze me.