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Another reason to avoid the wine country?

Chris Reynolds' article "After the Fires" (Jan. 14) highlighted why I'm not visiting Napa and Sonoma counties — a $233.15 average daily room rate. With an occupancy rate of only 56.5%, I guess I'm not the only one who feels this way.

Either the area has a glut of rooms and needs to prune inventory, or these hotels need to be much more realistic about pricing.

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David Jankowski

Carlsbad

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Just to add to Mike Morris' Weekend Escape on Moss Landing ("Family Adventure on Central Coast," Jan. 21):

Family lodging and family restaurants at affordable rates are available in Salinas. The National Steinbeck Center is near John Steinbeck's house in old-town Salinas. Salinas is the Monterey County seat and only 12 miles from Moss Landing.

The Haute Enchilada, a Mexican restaurant and tavern, is on Highway 1 at Moss Landing. It is very popular on weekends; the tavern has live music and barbecue on Sunday afternoons.

California Rodeo Salinas takes place every July, a major event. It's July 19-22 this year, and Blake Shelton is scheduled to headline the kick-off concert on July 13.

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Marina State Beach has a webcam (at surfline.com) and a wooden platform for launching hang gliders into the wind from the dunes.

Charlie Sykes

San Jose

Thanks for the 411 on the 395

Sorry to be so delayed in sending this, but I've been wanting to thank Mike James for his Sept. 24 piece on driving U.S. 395 ("Heading Up the 395? Stopping to Scope Out the Sights is Time Well Spent," lat.ms/driving395)

A week later, my son and I did some road tripping in the area, and James' mention of points of interest really made a difference.

We stopped at Fossil Falls (two weeks later, I was in London and was able to send the kid a photo of a real Henry Moore; it was a very appropriate comparison), Manzanar (which was my choice destination), the Alabama Hills (drove around them twice trying to spot the named formations; they need better signage), Bristlecone Pine Forest, Owens River Gorge and Convict Lake (definitely returning there).

Again, thanks.

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Terry Reagan

Easter Island, Chile

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