Saturday, July 28, 2012

Oregon Coast

We were away from home July 9-12 on a trip we had intended to make for a long time and which was a trip we will never forget.  We left home early Monday morning and headed for the Oregon coast.  After traveling through western Washington on Interstate 5, we left the Interstate at Longview, crossed the Columbia River there and headed west for Astoria and the coast following Highway 101.  The weather was a bit cloudy the first day but that did not interfere with our enjoyment of the trip

We only made it as far down the coast as Pacific City on Monday, taking a lot of detours for pictures, stopping for a lunch of grilled razor clams at a small seafood place in Seaside where we also stopped at the local tourist information service.  We went there to find out about some have-to-see places we needed not to miss.  We took our time to see whatever sounded interesting, to take a lot of pictures, and to make sure the trip was enjoyable and not rushed.

That first day we stopped at Hog Point and Cape Falcon as well as many of the beautiful  beaches to photograph the scenery, especially the seastacks along the shore.  We ended the day exploring Cape Meares and the area south of the cape and watched the sunset at Cape Lookout before finding a place to park our van, put up the curtains, and prepare our self-inflating pads and sleeping bags for the night.

The second day we got an early start but spent the day as before, stopping often, taking pictures whenever we fancied, and enjoying the fantastic scenery.  We stopped at Depoe Bay, touted as the world's smallest seaport, at the Devil's Punchbowl and spent a great deal of time at Yaquina Head photographing its lighthouse, the seals on the rocks below the light, the thousands of waterbirds, and watching a whale feeding just off the coast.

Our last stop in Oregon was near the town of Florence.  Driving down Highway 101 and away from the coast we saw a sign that said, "Darlingtonia Wayside."  Recognizing the name, Darlingtonia, as that of the Cobra Lily, we left the main road and found a small picnic area with a short walk that lead to a bog filled with Cobra Lilies, our first sight of this unique plant.  The walk ended on a viewing platform that made photography somewhat difficult, but we took plenty of pictures anyway.

That second day brought us the rest of the way down the coast into northern California and Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, but that is the subject of another post.  We had good weather for our trip, especially the second day, but in any weather the Oregon coast is one of the most scenic areas we have ever visited and we fully intend to make the trip again and even take more time to visit some of the places we missed on this visit.


  1. Oh the cobras look like preening birds!

    1. They are incredible, aren't they? We saw them in ten different locations, the first time we had ever seen them in the wild. They are worth the trip to southern Oregon and Northern California. though we saw a ton of other neat stuff as well.

  2. What a magical, special places, thank you for sharing them and your incredible photos

    1. Thank you, my friend, for commenting. This was trip my wife and I had wanted to make for a long time and it was wonderful. WE saw so much, had beautiful weather, enjoyed each other's company and got away for a while from the every day hustle and bustle.

  3. Ron

    These pictures look very much like the Gaspé coastline of Quebec, one of my favorite coastlines.

    Strangely enough I loved the pebble picture and the green sea anemone (I think?) the best, although pictures #7 and #9 were very Monet pictures of the coast. Picture #9 looked very much like a painting.

    The placid seagull on the fence is irresistible. He looks if he has seen enough tourists to know exactly how to pose for them. The sumptuous pinks of the flower below the seagull are amazing. Flawless shot.

    I don’t know why the pebbles and the sea urchin stand out among all very neat pictures of wildlife but they do. The particular is so much more interesting than a crowd to me. I think the blue-gray stones have a wonderful sheen. I’d have loved to have seen that sea anemone in her natural habitat and seen her in motion. She looks very shivery.

    This sounds like a trip worth doing if we ever get out of Alberta.

    And grilled razor clams? Were they yummy?


    1. Hi Julie,

      As to your favorites, I'm always more inclined to like and photograph the little things. I always find landscapes and people more difficult.

      The pebbles, by the way, are actually quite large and are made of black basalt, a rather unique thing in this place and the tourists have to be told not to take them away.

      We love exploring the tide pools on the coast. The anemones and starfish never fail to fascinate me. Hope you get to do the trip sometime as it is fabulous.

      As to the razor clams, our only regret was that we did not have them again. They were superb, especially grilled.



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