Sunburnt. Relaxed. Back at work.
Hindsight--It's always better to have a picture of the campgrounds before you go. The first night, we ended up next to the bathrooms in a very packed together site. At least we moved away from the bathrooms for night two. Next time, we'll have to do more recon and be sure to go to a place that has sites that are well-spaced (read--separate the loud neighbors from us, and vice versa). Of course, its easy to say "next time we'll..." and much harder to remember to do it--camping in the summer with only a month of lead time won't get you a reservation at most of the good California sites within easy driving of any metropolitan areas. Oh well, hindsight. We can hope that we'll pull it off better next year.
Perhaps the best thing about the trip besides friends at the fire was the empty hike. I can't remember the last time I took a gorgeous, well-maintained trail hike in California without encountering a single person. Oh, and the beach wasn't too bad. Come to think of it, neither was the weather. The fog, breeze, and haze (which had the politeness to clear up for the stars) were a welcome change from the sweltering heat of late at home.
The second best thing about the trip was this easy and delecious gourmet camping meal: Herb-Lemon-butter Salmon
Before you leave
Cut salmon into steaks. Place each steak, skin down, on its own large piece of aluminum foil. Cover each salmon steak with thin circular lemon slices. Place small chunks of butter in the spaces between the lemon slices. Shake garlic salt, oregano, sage, parsley, and black pepper over each steak. Fold the aluminum foil into sealed boats with a crease at the top.
At the campsite
Turn on the gas grill or create a good mound of coals below a grill for cooking over an open fire. Place the aluminum boats over the fire until they start steaming. Continue to cook, rotating to evenly heat the entire boat, for approximately 15 minutes (depends on the size of the steaks).