Norm Peterson was our guide for this day. Norm has only 3% of his eyesight left so we were also accompanied by his canine helper, Peekoe. After crossing the dunes back to the beach, we did 6 miles of walking on the hard sands of a low tide, arriving at the Coast Guard Station at noon just as our boat ride to Eureka, the Madaket, arrived.
Built in Eureka in 1910, the Madaket served as a ferry launch between Eureka and the lumber mills along Humboldt Bay. She took the mill workers to and from their jobs. In 1971when the Samoa Bridge was built, she and her sister ferries were put out of business. Now she is used as an excursion boat, taking visitors for tours around the bay and Eureka?s waterfront.
The volunteers of Humboldt County went all out for us this day. We arrived in Eureka and were greeted by banners and balloons. In attendance were the Mayor, a City Council member and a member of the Board of Supervisors. Also greeting us were representatives of Senator Wes Chesbro?s office as well as staff from Assemblywoman Patty Berg?s and Representative Michael Thompson?s office.
After the ceremonies at dockside, each walker was picked up by his home-stay family. We all went our separate ways to do shopping, laundry, and to take much needed baths. Later in the evening many of the volunteers and their families were guests at Rick and Betty Littlefield?s for a fine pot-luck dinner. Highlight of the evening was listening to walker Max Stein on the local NBC TV affiliate! (Jon Breyfogle; photos: Linda Hanes)