And I says to myself, "Self. What a nice July 4th gesture it would be to donate a few bucks to each park." But that would require an entire month's income. And then one of those wild hairs took hold of my gray matter.
I've spent a chunk of the past 48 hours assembling a list the 70 parks scheduled for closure. I've organized and categorized them geographically. And while my "research" is far from complete - I've decided to go for it.
I'm going to see how many of these 70 state parks I can visit in the next two months and write this blog about my trips.
Of the 70, I've only visited one official park site: Twin Lakes Beach in Santa Cruz.
In fact I was just there a few weeks ago having dinner at the Crow's Nest and walking out to the lighthouse. I wasn't even aware it was a state park! In addition, I have been to the Salton Sea, but not to the formal park site.
The state anticipates full closure to drag on into mid-year 2012, but a couple of the parks are already closed, and many are already operating under reduced hours.
It is unlikely I will get to all 70 parks by September. Time, money and stamina may fall short. I will have to resist the temptation to visit other sites of interest nearby the parks. I plan to always pack my meals and not spend time at restaurants or souvenir shops.
Two of my personal rules on these trips will be to photograph an official park sign, and to post a link to information about helping each particular park (if available.)
I welcome friends to join me on one or more excursions if you have the time and interest. Note that my car does NOT have air conditioning and depending on the destination, I will have a dog in the back seat.
I begin my excursions this Friday to two State Historic Parks in Sacramento: The Governor's Mansion and the Leland Stanford Mansion, both in downtown Sacramento.
I'm excited! I've often said that a traveler can be long satisfied without ever leaving the state of California. It's time to check out a few - maybe 70 or so - of those spots!
Here's a link to view the parks scheduled for closure.
See you at the parks.