Happy Wanderer: Fairbank’s Fall Color Seen Up, Down and All Around

The Yukon River in Alaska is seen at dusk. Alaska draws many visitors in September and early October. Fairbanks, Alaska, and nearby Denali National Park are under the Aurora Oval, with some of the world’s best viewing of the Northern Lights. Photo by Ginny Prior

 

HILLS NEWSPAPERS:September 6, 2019

One winter evening, in a town near the Arctic Circle, I was scouring the sky for the Northern Lights. Suddenly, I saw a splinter of light and felt a surge of energy that connected me surreally to the stars. What a letdown it was to discover, soon after, that it was a strobe light beckoning shoppers to a newly opened store in the village. Continue reading

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Happy Wanderer: L.A.’s West Third Street a perfect ‘pet-cation’

A group of hikers and a dog take a break while trekking above Hollywood in Runyon Canyon, one of the most popular dog destinations in Los Angeles, which in turn is possibly one of the planet’s most pet-friendly places for travelers. (courtesy of Danny Roman)

EASTBAYTIMES.COM: April 18, 2019

In Travels with Charley, author John Steinbeck takes his wife’s poodle, Charley, on a soul-searching journey and discovers what many of us know today — that traveling with pets is rewarding. A survey of travelers by TripAdvisor found that 53 percent of us sojourn with snorkies, schnauzers and other pets — unbred and not. Continue reading

Happy Wanderer: Yosemite offers classic holidays ambience Archetypal winter images abound at Mariposa Grove in the Sierra

 

Courtesy of Tenaya Lodge

EASTBAYTIMES.COM: December 7, 2018

It’s early December and the search has begun for the picture-perfect, Currier-and-Ives holiday experience. You know the scene — the horse-drawn sleigh gliding through snow-covered meadows, the mirrored skating pond and the pines draped in twinkling lights. John Muir knew where to find the magic. It’s still here today — in Yosemite. Continue reading

Happy Wanderer: Oysters steal the cuisine scene in Morro Bay

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Ginny Prior/for Bay Area News Group Autumn is called the “secret season” in San Luis Obispo County’s Morro Bay, above.

EAST Bay Times: October 19, 2018

New Orleans, New York, Morro Bay. When it comes to oysters, the coastal town with the famous Morro Rock wins, hands down. Autumn is called “secret season” in San Luis Obispo County’s Morro Bay. The warm sun and mild coastal breeze are perfect for dining seaside al fresco. And for foodies, the choices are impressive. Continue reading

Happy Wanderer: Seattle’s music scene not slowing down anytime soon

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One of more than 200 musical acts takes the stage in June at Seattle’s Upstream Music Fest + Summit. Photo by Ginny Prior

EAST BAY TIMES: July 5, 2018

Austin, Nashville, Seattle — these cities are defined by their live music scenes. But before you dismiss the Puget Sound “sound” as being too grunge, consider this. Seattle is a hot spot for all kinds of live music, in walkable neighborhoods with majestic views and cutting-edge cuisine. Continue reading

Happy Wanderer: Child of Alcatraz describes spectacular trail on ‘The Rock’

HILLS NEWSPAPERS: December 19, 2017

One of the Bay Area’s most spectacular trails is open to hikers, but just till the seagulls return to their rookery. It’s the little known Agave Trail along the backside of Alcatraz island, and it’s open during a time when Alcatraz Cruises is offering two-for-one tickets to locals. (More on that later.) Continue reading