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See ‘ya later Washington – Hellooooo Oregon!

We’re  both very excited to see the state of Oregon.  Everyone we’ve ever spoken to who has been here says it is absolutely beautiful.   After the GPS had us going around in circles in Longview, Washington for about a half hour we arrived safe and sound in Seaside, Oregon.

SEASIDE/CANNON BEACH/ASTORIA

Seaside Beach, Oregon

The following day we had a dinner with friends Teresa and Ed Haagsma fellow New Horizons owners and full-time RV’ers, who happened to be in the same area at the same time as us.  But before dinner we decided to venture into the little town of Seaside early to check it out.

Kevin & Carol with Ed & Theresa Haagsma in Seaside.

I had no idea what to expect!   Was I surprised to see this cute and touristy little town with shops, restaurants and lot’s of people enjoying their summer vacation.  We walked down to the beach where there was a pretty promenade, their version of a boardwalk.

The Turnaround at Seaside, Oregon
Kevin at the the Turnaround in Seaside, Oregon. It’s designed as the official end of the Lewis and Clark Trail. The monument of Lewis, Clark, and Seaman, commemorates the 18 month, 4,000 journey from Saint Louis to the Oregon Coast.

We decided to stop at a local tavern,  Dundee’s Bar & Grill,  for a nachos appetizer.  The menu says minor league or major league?  Ok, we’ll take the minor league as we were just looking to tame our bellies until dinner.  Oh my!  Let me just say that those nachos were probably the best nachos either of us have ever had.  So much so that we decided to go back there the last night of our week to have the “major league” plate of nachos with added pulled pork on top! YUM!!!!!  It was a home run!  As was the evening meeting up with our friends Theresa and Ed.

This was the “Major League” night later in the week! Kevin says he wasn’t praying to the food Gods, but I think he was!

Like Washington, the coast of Oregon has many unique and breathtaking beaches.  So the next day we took a drive south on the Pacific Coast Highway(101) from Seaside to Tillamook. We drove 50 miles of this scenic route and had to stop often to take in the views because it’s so beautiful.  I’ll never tire of the west coast beaches.

The end of our 50 mile drive was our destination, TIllamook. Maybe you’ve purchased in a grocery store at some time, Tillamook cheese and yogurt.  I don’t ever remember seeing it in Pennsylvania, but I have purchased it in the mid-west and west and it’s some good stuff! So we wanted to see the creamery. WOW! This creamery was quite huge and what a production! They not only have the actual production of making the cheese, they have a gift shop, ice cream shop and restaurant as well.

Tillamook factory in Tillamook, Oregon

Oh, I wanted some of that mac ‘n cheese. However, I did NOT want to wait in a line that looked like 2 blocks long!  The ice cream line was equally as long.  So I will have to buy some more cheese in the local stores and make my own mac ‘n cheese.

From here we turned around and drove back toward Seaside stopping along the way at a few of the more awesome Oregon coastline views.

Along the Pacific Coast Highway, just south of Smugglers Cove in‎⁨ Oswald West State Park⁩.

Our favorite beach in this area was Cannon beach.  Maybe you’ve heard of Cannon beach, maybe not?

Cannon Beach with Haystack Rock to the right,
Father and son playing soccer on Cannon Beach

But I bet many of you have seen the famous Haystack rock but don’t know it.  It was the backdrop for the 1985 movie, The Goonies ( I didn’t know that either). 

One Eyed Willie’s coin….
The Goonies cast on Cannon BeachIt. It was at Haystack Rock where the opening scene, the car race, of the Goonies was filmed

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We walked about a mile down the beach to enjoy the beauty of this  area and it was the right time to view a tide pool.  It was awesome!  We decided we will come back here one evening to observe a sunset.  We did just that 3 days later and it did not disappointment.

Tidal pool at Haystack Rock on Cannon Beach
Haystack Rock at sunset!
Surf on Cannon Beach
Need we say more?

The day before we were leaving the area, we ventured out to Astoria.  Astoria is a port city near the mouth of the Columbia river.  It holds the distinction of being the first permanent United States settlement on the Pacific coast and for having the first US Post Office west of the Rocky mountains.

Hiking out to the mouth of the Columbia river.

Here we walked the Columbia River walk and also took a ride over to Fort Stevens where we were able to see where the Columbia river and the Pacific meet. This confluence can be quite violent and deadly.

Coast Guard National Motor Lifeboat School training…
Retired lightship “Columbia” at the Columbia River Maritime museum.

Seaside was most definitely one of my favorite stops on this trip ( I know I say that about every stop) and we hope to do it again. Next time we will stay longer as there is so much to do in this little area.

PORTLAND

From Seaside it is off to Portland! I didn’t want to leave this area, ever! I love Portland!

Pioneer Courthouse Park in downtown Portland

It’s a quirky place (trust me on that) and has a vibe of a big city, but is still small enough to not overwhelm. Oh, and the food!  Whenever Kevin and I go to a foody town we almost always do a “food tour”. Walking food tours give you get the best of both worlds – history of the area and food, and yes you get to eat food! I say try it next time you are in a foody town. I don’t think you’ll regret it! Our food tour centered in the Downtown Portland area near the Alder Street Food Cart Pod near the Pioneer Courthouse Park.

Alder st. Food Cart Pod in Portland, Oregon

 

Alexis Eytinge imparting some local knowledge of Portland.

Alexis Moore Eytinge  was our guide on the food tour.  On this walking food tour we visited restaurants and food carts.  We’re so glad we decided to do this tour.  Alexis  was an excellent, knowledgeable, and congenial guide.  She shared history and insider knowledge of Portland and helped us get a feel of the city offerings.  The food was interesting and excellent  – most importantly the food was yummy and the experience was FUN!! Thanks Alexis!  Highly recommended!  Did I say, I didn’t want to leave Portland?

Another highlight of our time was a nice drive along the Columbia river inland toward the town of Hood River, Oregon.  There are many vineyards and wineries in this area.  We stopped at the Cathedral Ridge winery and had a glass of wine and some charcuterie.   All while sitting outside overlooking Mt. Adams to the North and Mt. Hood to the South.

Mount Adams to the north
Mount Hood to the south

Now it’s off to unknown areas , Corvallis & Eugene.   Eugene is the home of the University of Oregon Ducks.  Love those Ducks!  One thing we found funny in this area is that there are three towns with the same name of towns back home in Pennsylvania that we lived near – Harrisburg, Lebanon, and Lancaster.   What a coincidence!

Autzen Stadium, University of Oregon
University of Oregon “Ducks” indoor practice facility

In our never ending search for the perfect burger, here is the latest exhibit from Killer Burger .  They were good!

The things you see on the road! Yes, a homemade RV made out of an old school bus, and it has its own chicken coop on the roof!
We’re certainly on the west coast!

 

COOS BAY

And it’s now off to Coos Bay to hook up with our Buds, Ted and Dawn.  Oh, but wait I forgot!  Did I mention we hit a fork in the road along the way!

The “Fork” in the road!

Coos Bay it is and we’re  so  excited, since we were once again able to host our awesome friends from home.  Ted and Dawn Thompson explore different parts of the USA during the summer months and this year they made their way to us in Coos Bay.  We always have a great time catching up and hanging out.  It’s a touch of home that reminds us that we just aren’t modern day gypsies, but that we do come from somewhere!  Who knows where we’ll meet again.  But we know we can’t wait!  Enjoy the slide show below of Coos Bay.

CRATER LAKE

I’m always in my happy place when we visit a National Park!

So after saying goodbye to Ted and Dawn, our next stop is Prospect, Oregon,  which is approximately 40 miles southwest of Crater Lake.   Here we had not only a challenging hike to the Crater ( worth every step and every suck of O2), but contended with an active forest fire within 10 miles of our campground.   Trust me when I tell you, it rained ASHES for all the days we were there.

Crater Lake is an amazing place.  A couple facts that blew our minds concerning Crater Lake – Crater Lake is the deepest lake in the Western Hemisphere and the third-deepest in the world!  Guess how many gallons of water it holds?  4.6 TRILLION gallons!

We’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.  This is our last stop in Oregon (did I say it’s my fav so far?) and then on to California!

It rained ashes here – not rain ! These were all over our RV…
Chopper filling up its “bucket” for fighting the forest fire.
Massive fire camp with hundreds of firefighters and their equipment.

This is a snow marker along the road to Crater Lake. The Crater Lake area averages 505 inches of snow per year. This snow does not usually melt until mid-July, and allows for substantial glaciers on adjacent mountains. Notice the smoke!
2 mile hike down into Crater Lake to catch the only boat ride that is available on the lake. The dark blue color of the water is unbelievable!
Crater Lake is also known for the “Old Man of the Lake”, a full-sized tree which is now a log that has been bobbing vertically in the lake for over 120 years! It remains a mystery why it’s not floating horizontally.
If you look closely at the picture – the clarity of the water allows you to see the section of the tree that is underwater.
Headed out to Wizard Island in the middle of Crater Lake. The boat captain was from Pennsylvania!
This is Wizard Island, located near the western shore of the lake, a cinder cone approximately 316 acres in size. Essentially it was a volcano within a volcano. Notice the smoke rolling in – in the morning the sky was clear and in the afternoon the forest fire smoke appeared.
Here we are on top of Wizard Island, after a 2 mile hike UP switchback trails.
This is another one of those places where pictures cannot do the place justice!
Kevin Hiked to the bottom of the cinder cone on Wizard Island.

After a 2 mile descent of Wizard Island, we finished the boat tour. This is the other small island in Crater Lake, called the Phantom Ship. Then back to the boat dock for another 2 mile ascent out of Crater Lake. I’d say we got our exercise this day!

We made a quick stop right near the California border.  Kevin thinks he found his dad Sam’s first police car!   Car 54 where are you?

California here we come!

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