The seaplane landed on Ten Mile Lake before we could get the camera ready and snap an action pic
One of the many lighthouses dotting the Oregon coastline. This pic was taken from high atop a cliff at Sea Lion Caves
The Oregon coastline looking south. The sand dunes went on for miles
Sissy posing on the boardwalk at Lincoln City, Oregon. Notice the locals in shorts/bathing suits and t-shirts while Sissy was wrapped up tight with jeans, sweats and leathers
John taking a break at our campsite in Devil´s Lake State Park
We were up and moving around early on Wednesday in anticipation of leaving the super windy Cape Blanco State Park. The morning wind greated us with increasing speeds but not as bad as the day before. To the dump station we went, and then it was time for heading north again along the Oregon coastline.
Everything we´d heard about the coast was accurate; winding roads, light traffic, sparsely populated towns and cities, trees, trees and more trees, sand dunes, lakes and rivers and beautiful scenery. The coast was dotted with lighthouses, small towns, unique looking bridges, woodcarving shops and gift stores, lakes and rivers, rocky cliffs and finally miles and miles of shoreline. To our surprise, there were even folks walking and playing in the surf in a few spots (they must´ve been locals because the temperature was in the low to mid 60´s).
Driving through the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area reminded us of the Outer Banks of North Carolina. The dunes were huge and went on for miles. Small mom and pop Beachbuggy Rental Shops were everywhere along Highway 101. They even had buggies that seated about 20 people.
Ten Mile Lake was an interesting experience. While driving north on Highway 101, John noticed a seaplane descending for a landing on the lake. He pulled off into a gravel area (sliding some of the way) to get a good pic, but before the camera was readied, the plane had landed. Whelp, maybe next time. Sissy snapped a pic of the plane and lake anyway because it was so beautiful; blue water and sky, lily pads along the water´s edge and evergreen trees everywhere.
The Sea Lion Caves were next and we pulled into the parking lot on the east side of the highway. We really didn´t need the sign telling us to be careful while crossing over to the ocean side but it was there anyway for the ´West´ Virginia tourists. The wind was blowing real hard; how hard you say? Hard enough for John to lose his hat just outside the gift shop while taking pics of a lighthouse. Sissy saved the day however, by leaving a tennis shoe print on top. We browsed the gift shop a while for Sissy to drop some more coin, but didn´t pay the entrance fee to ride the elevator down to the caves. Why pay to see sea lions when we can see them all along the coast (we´d already done that)?
Ok, up the coast some more we went enjoying the scenery all the way. If you ever get to Oregon, make sure you travel on Highway 101 and not Interstate 5 because it is beautiful. Speed limits were 55 MPH in most places and dropped down to as low as 30 MPH through small towns. It may take a little longer to get to where you´re going, but it´s well worth it!
It was getting close to our driving limit for the day (250 miles), so we decided to stop at a Wall Mart store for supplies. John wanted some gallon jugs of water, a new pair of slippers, some shorts, a long-handle windshield squeegee and a battery powered light (for those dry campgrounds). He was successful in locating everything but the shorts. Sissy, of course, wanted her usual shot glasses for herself and others. She was successful also.
An interesting thing happened while inside the store. The store clerks were their usual cheerful and helpful selves, but the locals were not. It seemed like everyone frowned and was rude while pushing their shopping carts down the isles. And, while at the checkout counter, we noticed a woman trying to unload her goods with a small child inside the cart. Sissy went to hold onto the cart so the child wouldn´t fall out. The woman didn´t smile or even say thank you. What she did do however, was throw a large plastic container (she was purchasing) onto the floor with a loud bang. Both the clerk and us were surprised at her behavior, but she didn´t seem to mind the action at all. Go figure! Maybe she was having a bad day, or better yet, maybe she acted like that all the time.
We stopped at a campground in Newport and a KOA campground in Lincoln City but rejected both for various reasons. We then went to Devil´s Lake State Park in the Siuslaw National Forest. We found out later, the park stays full to capacity every day during the summer, and the full-hookup sites are reserved for months in advance. We lucked out however, because the Park Host failed to show up on time. The ranger gave us that (full-hookup) site for the night and told us if we wanted to stay another night, we could move in the morning.
After parking the rig (the trailer remained hooked up), we took the bike out for a spin through the park and to the Mooring Slips for pics. We also rode into town (Lincoln City) to the local smoke shop for cigarettes and pics along the boardwalk. To our amazement, locals were on the beach and in the water as the wind blew about 30 MPH. We were freezing even with our leathers on. Maybe we hadn´t acclimated ourselves to the northwest yet!
Back to the campground for dinner we went. John started a fire in the fire pit while Sissy prepared the food; baked beans and hot dogs. Don´t laugh - dogs and beans are good while on vacation. And besides, after dinner it was time for roasting marsh mellows again (Sissy was by herself on that one because John was stuffed). A little television (cable) was next finding the Weather Channel in record time. Rain was on the way and would be with us for about a week while in Washington. We didn´t care about that because we hadn´t seen real rain since we left Virginia Beach and the rig (truck, trailer and bike) needed a good bath.
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