Santa Cruz and Capitola

A day trip captured on CineStill 50

Note: This post was originally published on January 9, 2016 on Exposure. It can be found at http://cwcapella.exposure.co/santa-cruz-and-capitola

We Took a Day Trip

Me and a couple of my buddies piled into our Jeep early in the morning on August 14th to embark on our most ambitious photo adventure yet: a day trip from Nevada City to Santa Cruz and Capitola (a near four-hour drive each way) and back again. We made pretty good time getting down there once we got on the road (despite a couple hiccups in the morning, like sleeping in past the alarm) and spent the whole day exploring Santa Cruz and the surrounding area. This is a look back at our trip as captured on CineStill 50 film.

CineStill 50 1
The Giant Dipper

The Boardwalk

After a picnic lunch at Natural Bridges and a cruise along the coast, we stopped for a while at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.

I didn’t ride any rides, but two out of the four of us rode The Giant Dipper. Then we walked along the beach.

When we walked to the end of the beach, we ended up at the pier.

The Pier

We started off by checking out how it looked from underneath. I guess it’s a popular spot for photos, because there was a family there taking portraits underneath it, too.

Close up of underneath the pier
Close up of underneath the pier

We walked along it all the way until the end; from the edge you could get a really great view of the entire Boardwalk.

Then, we piled back into the car and took off for our next stop: a small beach town just a little ways away called Capitola.

The pier at Capitola
The pier at Capitola

Capitola

We parked (after hunting for a spot for a little – it was kinda busy) and walked along the tracks to get down to the beach. There was a surfing class or something going on while we were there, so we stayed and watched for a little while.

We walked around downtown for a little bit and did a little more exploring, but we were going to start losing daylight in an hour or two and we still had one more place that we wanted to check out. So back into the car it was and we set out for our last stop.

Rio Del Mar State Beach, looking right
Rio Del Mar State Beach, looking right

Rio del Mar State Beach

Our last stop was at Rio Del Mar State Beach, just a little bit farther south than Capitola. We hung out there for a while – it was actually pretty clean and the waves were really fun to walk through.

Then it was back in the car to go to Santa Cruz for dinner (Thai food, which seems to be our default photo adventure cuisine.) And then the near-four hour car ride back home to finish out the day.

Exploring Hawaii

A couple weeks ago, my family and I took a trip to Hawaii. We stayed in Mauna Loa on the Big Island for ten days and despite frequent beach going, we also went out on a couple of adventures to different places on the island.

Native to Hawaii

Since I’m from California, seeing all of the different plants in Hawaii was pretty awesome for me. Not to mention the little green geckos which were running all over the place constantly (the little guy above just sat on a wooden post and looked at me taking his picture.)

Pololu Valley Lookout

One of our other day trips was a hike down to a black sand beach at the end of the highway at Pololu Valley Lookout. The hike was a steep one but definitely worth the views you got along the way (and the awesome beach that was waiting at the bottom.) On the way back, we stopped for lunch a little joint called Minnie’s as per the recommendation of a local pineapple stand owner (where we bought the best pineapple we’ve ever had: a white pineapple grown right in his yard.)

Lapakahi State Historical Park

Lapakahi State Historical Park is really fascinating to walk through: it’s the remains of an ancient fishing village as well as the site of some beautiful scenery. There’s a path for you to follow with locations marked on a map, with everything from ancient houses to the games they played there.

Akaka Falls State Park

One of the most beautiful day trips we took was to Akaka Falls, a massive waterfall not too far away from Hilo. The whole park is pretty amazing, as there are a lot of smaller waterfalls and creeks as well, plus some pretty huge trees. There’s a little cement path winding through it (though it was lightly raining when we went, so the stairs were pretty slippery) that you can follow to hike through the park.

Since we were staying in the drier part of the island, the sudden change in scenery from dried lava rock to grassy farmland was made for some pretty awesome landscapes on the way there.

On the way back from Akaka Falls, we also stopped at Kolekole Park, which is pretty close by. They had this really awesome bridge there over a creek, as well as a neat waterfall and coastline as well.

 

Revisiting Hawaii now that I’m older (since the last time I went was when I was a little kid,) I really enjoyed being able to explore the island more than we previously had done. Until next time Hawaii.