Saturday, July 26, 2014

Oregon Coast 2014

When I arrived at the Tillamook Moose Lodge I found out that they have only room for one RV on their parking lot, and I could not have it because they expected 300 people for a big party. So I decided to drive out to Netarts, to Big Spruce RV Park, which belongs to Passport America.
As soon as I drove into the driveway I noticed the “No Vacancy” sign. It was too late to turn around. When I asked the young man, who was running around like a chicken without a head, whether he has a site for me, he told me yes, and to set up the motorhome and see him in the afternoon when he has more time. I was surprised he gave me the site that early in the morning, since I showed him my Passport America card. Normally RV Parks like to take care first of customers who pay full price.
The young man was renting out boats for people who went crabbing.
After a nap I drove to the Air Museum. I had been there before, but I wanted to meet Christian Gurling, the grandson of Ed Gurling. He had sent me an E mail after I attended the Celebration of Life Service for Ed. Christian was looking for his grandfather’s obituary on the Internet, when he came across my blog. I had a post about the service on my blog.
Christian gave me a little tour, and I mean little. Most of the airplanes are gone. The owner of the museum moved them to another location. We had a wonderful conversation though.

My next stop was the Blue Heron French Cheese Company. It was a very busy place. I had a feeling that it was the wrong place. When I asked people they did not know. They were satisfied with this place.

When I came back to the motorhome and read the brochures I found out that there is also a Cheese Factory, the original place.
After dinner I walked to Netarts Bay, which is a quarter of a mile from the RV Park.

The Schooner Restaurant has two large roofs over their outside seating area. From a distance the roof appears to be all solar panels. When I asked somebody I was told that the roof is made of Plexiglas.

From display panels I learned about the history of the bay.

I also learned how important clams are. It is difficult to understand that this small creature can filter 50 gallons of water a day.

Today I drove the Three Cap Scenic Loop. My first stop was at Munson Creek Waterfalls. The falls are 266 feet high and I wish I could have walked closer to it, but the trail was closed.

The walk to the falls was like almost going through a rain forest. Moss was hanging from the trees.

The Oregon coastline is very beautiful. Three Arch Rocks are visible in the distance.

A lot of people were clamming.

Oregon has also an Oceanside.

At Cape Meares I ate my lunch and then walked to the lighthouse.

From Cape Meares the Three Arch Rocks can be seen from the other side.

The tunnels are visible from here.

The lighthouse is not very large.

Not very far from the lighthouse is Oregon biggest spruce.

On the way home I visited the Cheese Factory. It is a large compound.

They use thousands of gallons of milk a day.

The cheese manufacturing line is seen from a mezzanine. Unfortunately the glass is colored and the pictures are dark.

They have only one old time vat for making small orders of specialty cheese. The rest is produced in modern automated big tanks.

Inside the building are two ice cream selling stations. This line was slow for a few minutes. People stand in line to buy ice cream. Since everybody had a cone or dish in their hands I could not be different. In the last few months I was very good and stayed away from this calorie laden stuff.

The Cheese Factory is a Co-Op. Farmers own it.

They used Volkswagen buses in their advertisements.

Milk cows are all over the meadows in this region of Oregon.

This was a wonderful, busy day.
I left Netarts at 6:00 AM and headed down highway 101, which is a two lane road and marked the Pacific Coast Scenic Byway. It is very scenic, especially the part where the road follows the ocean.
In the first hour there was still fog at certain places.
When I came near Newport I could see the Yaquina Head with its tall lighthouse.

In Newport I parked the motorhome near Newport Bayfront, which is a tourist area on the bay. There are shops and restaurants. 

Murals adorn the walls of shops.

The Yaquina Bay Bridge is one of the beautiful bridges built during the depression.

After a short rest I drove to the lighthouse. At 93 feet it is Oregon’s tallest lighthouse.

On the rocks, below the lighthouse, are thousands of birds.

Taking care of a lighthouse was not easy. The whole family was involved.

When I came back to the motorhome I ate lunch and proceeded my Journey. The Elks Lodge in Florence had a space for me, but only for today. They have a regular RV Park with 38 spaces, and today a large group is coming in and filling up the place.
After I set up the motorhome I drove to the Heceta Head Lighthouse. I have been there before but never walked the half mile up to the lighthouse. Today I did it.

The keepers house is located down the hill.

From there the Siuslaw River Bridge is visible in the distance. It is also a very distinct, beautiful bridge.

People had a good time on the beach.

After coming down from the lighthouse I drove to Old Town in Florence. It is also located on the water.

I could not take a good picture of the bridge near Old Town, so I borrowed a picture.

I left the Elks Lodge at 7:00 AM. It was still too early. There was fog near the coast. I drove to Fred Meyer and got gasoline for the motorhome and then went in the store and spent some time buying things I needed. I left Florence at 8:00 AM.
In North Bend I stopped at the Mill Casino. They charge now $ 15.00 for dry camping. I drove in the gravel parking lot anyway and went to the RV Park office. Over the weekend they had a RV Show and the parking lot was filled with new RVs.
I was told that I could park free across the street at a small parking lot. I registered and got a sticker. When I got to the small parking lot a group of six rigs was leaving.
I set up the motorhome, packed a lunch and drove to Winchester Bay.
At the marina the sun was shining, but as soon as I came near the ocean the fog was very thick.

I drove up to the Umpqua River Lighthouse. Conditions were better there.

I took the lighthouse tour and to my surprise we were not only able to go inside the working lighthouse, but we could stick our head into the Fresnel Lens, while the light was on. It is on 24 hours a day.

From the top of the lighthouse I could see the Coast Guard family housing and a foggy beach.

After the tour I went to the museum.
Outside the museum is a 36 foot lifeboat. It had a diesel engine and a crew of three went out to save mariners in distress. If it tipped over it could right itself again in eight seconds.

Inside the museum is a picture of the boat in action.

My next stop was Horsfall Dunes in the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area.

People come here to ride their All Terrain Vehicles. The dunes are forty miles long.

From the dunes I could see the Conde McCullough Memorial Bridge.

In the evening I wanted to make a telephone call and noticed that my cell phone was not at its proper place. I have lost it again. Last time I was lucky and got it back. I have a feeling I lost it in the Horsfall Dunes. The sand will cover it very quickly.

Today was my lucky day. I left at 9:00 AM for the sand dunes to look for my cell phone. Last night I charged my Virgin Mobile Phone and called my Verizon phone. Nobody answered so I knew that nobody had found it yet.
When I arrived at the dunes I got my phone ready to dial and listen. I had planned to dial at certain intervals. Before I could dial, my phone rang. Somebody had just found my lost phone. The family was sightseeing and at an overlook two miles away.
This saved me a lot of headaches, going to a Verizon store and get a new cell phone.
Now I could go to Fishermen’s Wharf in Charleston. 

Every town on the coast has a monument for people lost at sea.

An ocean going ship came by.

I watched three fishermen ripping crabs apart.

Everybody did it different.

They had a good catch. The limit for each person is twelve crabs.

At the Simpson Reef Overlook I saw a lot of seals or sea lions making a lot of noise. There were hundreds of them.

Back in North Bend I watched men loading logs onto a Chinese ship. Four cranes worked at the same time.

When I came back to the motorhome I converted a lanyard, used to hold cards for working slot machines in casinos, to a holding device for my cell phone. It attaches to the belt loop on my trousers and the case for the phone.
I do not want to lose my phone the third time.

I continued my journey down the coast. It was foggy again. Finally, in Battle Rock, I saw blue sky. I stopped for a while.

A few miles down the road the sun was gone again.

The sun was shining again in Brookings. I set up the motorhome at the Elks Lodge and went for a long walk in the harbor area.

Late afternoon the weather was really nice.

1 comment:

tifrich said...

Hello, my name is Tiffany, and I have a funny story to share about the "Lost at Sea" memorial. The name that is filled in is that of my paternal grandfather, Art Richards, a longtime Coos Bay resident who is very much alive, although my grandmother, Dolly, passed last September. The name on the other side, John Richards, is my paternal great-grandfather (Art's dad), who was lost at sea in 1941.