Saturday, June 02, 2007

Spectacular Oregon Coast

a little color:

These photos are all taken along about a 30-mile stretch of the Oregon coast, from Oswald West State Park south to Netarts. We took a little belated birthday trip for Jim's birthday, and also to get a little taste of summer before buckling back down to work. We had a wonderful time. This stretch of coastline is riven with bays and sand spits and inlets and estuaries and mountains so it is always dramatic and each bend brings all new scenery, with dozens of state and county parks hither and thither -- a detour into the hills to a tucked-away river paradise, or a narrow path through scrubby dunes to a white beach, or down a long, long sand spit with ocean beaches on one side and bay beaches on the other. And this is all just an hour and a half from Portland. Look:

Oswald West State Park

I LOVE Nehalem Bay, with its blue skies and its little riverside antique-store-filled towns of Wheeler and Nehalem on one side and the huge, wondrous state park on the other (a great place to ride horses on the beach).

Nehalem Bay State Park



Nehalem shops

Further south, out from the dairy settlement of Tillamook, known for its cheddar and ice cream, are Cape Meares, Oceanside, and Netarts.



Cape Meares

Kilchis River Park

Just a little ways north of Tillamook there's a small sign off the highway pointing the way to this delightful riverside county park, way off the beaten path. We were the only people there. It was so quiet, with just the shush of the creek and the splish of leaping fish. There's a great campground too, and seems like a perfect place to swim on a hot day. Bring your inner tubes!

Our cabin in Manzanita

This was the third time we've stayed in lovely Manzanita. Bit irritated to find that none of the restaurants were open mid-week, though! See, what we want is to get away to a beautiful, semi-secluded, non-touristy town, but we want there to be good cafes and wine bars such as one finds in the city! Is that too much to ask? Ha ha -- off-season, it is. And if you're out this way: for breakfast, go to Wanda's in Nehalem. YUM. For coffee: Bread & Ocean in Manzanita. It's organic and roasted in Cannon Beach, and there's a cute octopus painting on the patio.

at the Tilamook creamery (can you say "full fat ice cream"?)

Jim & Leroy

We had plans for hiking and kayaking and various active pursuits, but unfortunately, the first time we got out of the car at Oswald West and walked the half-mile through the forest to the beach, Leroy's old doggy elbows got very sore from his arthritis and his limp was so bad for the next few days that we pretty much took it easy. There are a lot of pictures of us sitting in chairs in the sand or at the river bank, reading, drinking wine, and thinking up new story ideas for the future (and ooh, we have a good one!). I am dying to go kayaking in Nehalem Bay next time. It's so beautiful, and there are otters and seals and herons, and miles of secluded beach to paddle to, both up river and out towards the sea. Better time the tides right though, or you'll be begging a fisherman for a tow back!

Our friends Chary and Aaron came out for one night and we had a BLAST. They were foolish enough to disregard the hand-written warning label on a bottle of hot sauce at the taqueria, and they wept tears of hilarious (sorry guys, but it was!) agony for several minutes, and later we played Beyond Balderdash, to much more laughter. Below, see Chary and Aaron picking out his and hers majorette costumes at the antique store in Wheeler. VERY charming!


Amber Lough said...

It's almost like reading Lonely Planet! I'm glad you were able to get away - it sounds like you had a fabulous time.

You've added some info on Oregon that Jim and I didn't have (coastal towns). We're crossing our fingers that he gets accepted to grad school at UO.

Amber said...

Oh wow! This was neat. It is so dang beautiful and charming along the OR coast. We really need to take another trip soon. some of Kory's Kesey family live not far from Tillamook. I just love it there!

I am happy you guys had fun.


Tinker said...

What fun! Beautiful photos. We went on camping vacations when I was a young teen, up in Oregon and Washington, and though I can't remember what campgrounds we stayed at (teenagers!) - I DO remember the Tillamook Creamery! I still buy Tillamook cheese, since they carry it some stores down here, and I love it.

Thanks for taking us along on your journey!

Anonymous said...

I love those colourful photos, so glad you had a brilliant getaway.

Rhonda the Stitchingnut said...

Those photos tell it all ... relaxing beauty. Love those kind of get-aways. Wish the West Coast wasn't so far away. Thanks for sharing your pictures and good times. Now I'll have to look for the East Coast equivalent.

liz elayne lamoreux said...

looks like such fun was had by all! love all the photos laini! jon and i are headed there with my dad later this month. i can't wait. we went two years ago and stayed in manzanita and i have been just waiting to go back!

meghan said...

I think Leroy might have been exaggerating just so that you two would take it easy! You needed a lovely break & it sounds like you had one! Someday I will travel through your neck of the woods properly!!

madelyn said...

I just cant' get past that cute red tea-cup!

Great meandering post and full fat ice cream
all the way!

Patry Francis said...

I'm with maddie. I want to live under the star of that red tea cup. How could anything ever go wrong?

Alex S said...

That pink house and these ocean photos are just wonderful! It reminded me of when we went to Manzanita last summer and you ate that whole gigantic barrel of saltwater taffy in less than 30 minutes. You are a taffard! I hope you have the opportunity to spend many, many, many more days out on the coast which you two love so much. You're missed here in Portland though!

Anonymous said...

We love that part of the coast too!
Did you know Dave and I moved to Cape Meares 1 day after we were married in Sun valley? It was amazing to live out on that spit of land!We lived in a house way up on the hill with amazing views and deer in our yard!

Kim G. said...

You look like you hit the weather jackpot for a trip to the coast. Your pictures look lovely!

I just listened to the podcast and was blown away by your brilliance! (Jim was great, too!) I loved hearing your story of writing the book. Even though I've read much of it on the blog, it was great fun to hear you tell it. (You are a very gifted speaker by the way! You didn't sound nervous at all.) Thanks for sharing that with us.

Judy Wise said...

omigoodness, what sunny, colorful, cheerful, wonderful photographs of you and your friends at the beach! Thank you for taking us along - I feel refreshed by the salty air and full fat ice cream.

Casey G. said...

You pictures are so very beautiful. They brought a smile to my face, I would love to visit the west coast. Thanks for sharing :)

Anonymous said...

Just playing a bit of catch up! What wonderful photographs of your trip along the coast. So glad to hear that you two had a fantastic time!

Unknown said...

Your photos are so beautiful, I especially like the one of Nehalem shops. Any chance you could share the make of camera you used..... please.

Unknown said...

sigh, I really need to plan my own coast trip! We've got a cabin in Manzanita we stay at too! You are right about the midweek closed stores, why can't they be open for us non-weekenders? and my mom LOVES wandas she'd eat there every day if she could (and i would too-a TV fish tank?).

Anonymous said...

Thank you for taking me along on your beautiful trip! I loved every minute of it-- especially the ice cream--- merci!!!!


Anonymous said...

Wow, that is such a beautiful area. I've never been to the PacNW but it seems very beautiful! And the cute pink house at the beginning! I want it! I'm a new reader of yours and so far I like!

Anonymous said...

What beautiful pictures! I feel like I've been on a vacation. Your little doggy is a cutie pie :)

Anonymous said...

oh you bring back such beautiful images of my home in the northwest! ( i had totally forgotten about the joy of tillamook ice cream!) :)

Vicki Knitorious said...

Oh, how beautiful. We lived in a motel in Netarts for a month, our newborn baby for her first week (born 22 years ago in Tillamook) while we waited to close on a house at Cape Meares -- no doubt, you drove right by. Gorgeous photos -- thanks so much!

(Congrats on your "newborn," too.)

Internet Marketing Guru said...

Great photos! Thanks for sharing =]

Anonymous said...

Look at that glorious weather! Looks like a grand time.