Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Rock

Our next adventure was on to "The Rock," or Alcatraz. Karen booked the night tour because we had heard that it was such a unique experience in the dark.
Karen went over to will call and I saved us a spot in the line. We waited for a little over 10 minutes before we started boarding. Things were working in our favor, it was awesome.
The bay was clear (we just got off of our ferry ride back to San Francisco about and hour before this point, so we knew it was nice out there). But there was an almost surreal surprise waiting for us from the view of the boat.
The bay was still crystal clear, but there was a cloud of fog sneaking up and over Alcatraz Island.
(I almost feel like I need to say that this is a picture from my sister's camera... not from a postcard or one we found on-line)
It was the eeriest looking site I've ever seen.
It is only a myth that Alcatraz is haunted, but if you were to ever believe anything was haunted, this would be the scene that would set that off. Even the ferry driver said he'd never seen a view of Alcatraz quite like this one.
This only piqued our interest even more. We were so excited to get there and take the tours and learn more about this very infamous place.
We had great tour guides and learned so much while we were there. I won't give away any of the details because if you ever get to San Francisco, this tour is a must-see!
As it grew dark, we toured infamous cells and the solitary confinement area. We also walked through what was considered the worst part of Alcatraz prison to be assigned. It seemed as though it would have been the best because the cells were so much larger than the 5 x 10 cells in the other cell blocks, but it was the windiest and coldest area of the prison. You could hear the air moving through as the wind bellowed outside.
We took the self-guided recorded tour, we attended the "Famous Prisoners" tour, the "Jail Break" tour, and the "Myths About Alcatraz" tour. I would like to say that I am well versed on all of these topics, however the day caught up with Karen and me and so we zonked out toward the end. We put in a valiant effort though.
I will say that as tired as we were, we still appreciated the spooky scenery while we were there. Here are some of the shots that we got (still just from our phones, so not very high quality) from the fog covered island at night.

So a ferry ride back to San Francisco and one of the craziest "Town Car" (we didn't even feel like getting a taxi) rides back to our room and "good night Day 1."

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