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BAHCC Mendocino Country Tour
May 12-15, 2011

Willits city sign
Sign over Main Street in Willits, California. (Photo by snej.)

Jeanne and Lynn take Annie on a four-day tour in Mendocino County sponsored by the Bay Area Horseless Carriage Club. Sixteen horseless carriages participate on the tour.

1914 Buick 1913 Ford 1914 Simplex
Cars arriving at Emandal: Ramona & Eric Anninger in their 1914 Buick B-25 (left); Fred Byl and family in his 1913 Ford Touring (center); Johnny & Chris Crowell in their 1914 Simplex (right).

Centered in Willits, day 1 takes them to Chamberlain Creek Conservation (Fire) Camp #22 on a 34-mile shakedown tour. Day 2 is a 49-mile tour to Emandal's Eclectic Organic Farm and to Seabiscuit Ranch. On day 3 they journey 51 miles to Covelo and Round Valley.

snow air plant snow
Seen on the last day of touring...

For day 4, a wet and cold front has moved in and none of the old cars venture out of the parking lot. Jeanne and Lynn use their Excursion tow vehicle to drive the planned route. They made a small side trip, retracing part of the day 2 route to a slightly higher elevation, to see the freshly fallen snow.

The trip to Emandal took us on about 20 miles of dirt road. Although some of the participants grumble about the dust, Lynn thinks about the kind of roads Annie must have experienced when she was new. He imagines that motoring on the dirt roads is more historically appropriate for a 1914 automobile and tries to use this to experience a brief step back in time.

ladies Annie Seabiscuit repair
Ladies in their dusters (left); Lynn, Jeanne and Annie at Seabiscuit Ranch (2 center); roadside repairs (right).

The primary organizers of the tour are Nancy and Fred Byl. They use the occasion of the tour to hold a mini family reunion. By Lynn's count, there were three Byl children and spouses, plus seven Byl grandchildren. It was an impressive gathering!

Annie completes the tour with no complaints. She has turned into a real tour trooper.

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Copyright © 2015 Lynn Kissel
Last updated: May 18, 2011