Monday 26th September, 2016
We finally made it to the coast. Our first stop was a casino in Lincoln City. To get “Free” overnight parking. I signed up for a players card which we then had to use to gamble. We needed 40 points for 3 free days. The card had $5 credit from the casino to get you in the salivating gambling mood.
After a tense 40 minutes on a blackjack machine we had not only made up our 40 points but gained $5 dollars. Time to cash out. Oh Yeah baby, we are the gambling superstars.
The weather stayed beautiful and clear. We spent quite a while whale watching at Depoe Bay. The huge gray whales were feeding very close to shore, but not close enough for me to get any good pictures. Grey whales please cooperate and do a little breaching for Rose.
Down the coast a bit to Newport. Yaquina Head lighthouse was first lit in 1873. The lighthouse keeper had to haul pig oil in a can up the 114 stairs every day to keep the lamp going. Dean would prefer these tanks if they held some beer.
The original Fresnel lens is still intact although automated now. This lighthouse is the tallest, still working lighthouse in Oregon.
OK, I have to say it. In our opinion, Oregon has the best coastline of the lower 48 states and we have been up and down them all. All 363 miles of beaches are public with free pullouts, parks and access points everywhere. There are lots of great hikes along the cliffs.
We knew we were back on the Oregon coast when we saw the good old Banana slug. This little darling was on the small side. It’s a whole bunch of yucky if you ever step on one.
The foxgloves have almost finished blooming.
Some beaches allow vehicles and this one was packed.
We stayed a couple of days in Newport and Dean was anxious to visit the Rogue brewery. We visited here back in the early 90’s when this brewery was still pretty small.
Now they are distilling spirits and even making their own barrels.
I really enjoyed their multi berry cider. They grow many of their grains and fruits on farms in Oregon.
We spent ages watching the “shoving game” on the docks with sea lions. The Yaquina bridge in Newport is still great looking even after 80 years.
Moving down to Charleston requires a visit to Shore Acres State Park. We have been there in all seasons and it always looks pretty.
A trip back to the 90’s with Grandma and Granddad Kirkwood. The rhododendrons and tulips were a treat to see. Jay posed enthusiastically for the tulip picture.
I wanted Dean to climb in the hole at the base of the tree, but this is the best shot he would give me. We met up with our good friend Eric and traded some soap for jars of albacore tuna he had caught. Delicious tuna salad sandwiches here we come.
On down to Bandon. I think we must have spent several months there cumulatively over our 12 year stay in Grants Pass. When it got up to triple digits in the dog days of August, I would take the lads to Bandon for a week or two. This is Bandon Lighthouse in 2016 and 1994. I do believe the lighthouse is aging better than us although the lads are still prime.
Ahhh the Bandon Cheese Factory. We always stopped in to taste the free cheese samples. The ice cream scoops were enormous. The Kirkwood’s do love their ice cream as you can see from three generations. The old building was torn down years ago but just recently reopened with a new name. The Creamery. It still has the same yummy cheeses and ice cream.
The lower portion of the coast is packed with sea stacks (protruding rocks) which makes walking on the beach very interesting.
We stayed a few days in a great camping spot. Thank you so much Esther and Roy for giving up your driveway.
We had a wonderful time listening to all your Alaska adventures. I loved looking at all your fur coats hats and mittens.
Moving to Port Orford. Their dock is famous for being only one of two Dolly docks in the USA. ( Los Angeles has the other one) All the boats (mostly commercial fisher boats) have to be lifted in and out of the water by crane and parked on trailers.
Another pretty lighthouse. This one is called Cape Blanco Light Station and is the most westerly working lighthouse on the Oregon coast. We stopped at Agate Beach and guess what? I found me some agates.
Brookings is the last stop on the Oregon Coast. My mom enjoyed hiking on the beaches and looking for sea life in the tide pools. We loved bringing our parents to the Oregon coast.
A nice day trip into California to visit the Redwood National Park. They are quite magnificent and the tallest trees in the world. I got a crick in my neck from all the looking up.
These trees that can reach heights of over 370 feet and also reach 2000 years in age. The root systems are quite shallow. The shallow roots can be over a hundred feet long though.
I really am a tree hugger. My mom loved them too.
Dean is trying to lift this tree so I can pass under. Dax managed it with one hand when he was eight.
We just HAD to make a return nostalgia trip through this giant redwood. It’s grown about 1 foot/year in the last 23 years. Mind you our present car is also a lot smaller than our old beast. The same lady was still at the ticket booth. She said her family has had the property for many generations and used to be dairy farmers. A huge flood put an end to that business so an enterprising family member cut the hole in the tree and the rest is history. It was totally worth $5.
Moving back inland tomorrow. Goodby lovely Oregon coast.