Day 40: Day trip to Washington

We left the RV in Portland and drove north to Mt. St. Helens National Volcanic Monument.  The visitor center was well done.  Visibility was down to a mile of so thanks to fog, so unfortunately we didn’t get to see the mountain, but the kids did receive their Junior Ranger badges:

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We then headed North to Chehalis where Trish had arranged for us to meet up with Liz and Jason.  We decided to go bowling, and we were assigned a pair of lanes in their own private space:

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The kids gave it their best:

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Afterwards we flew Jason’s quadricopter and R/C plane a bit.  He’s a very gifted pilot!

Tomorrow we head south from Portland towards Salem.

Day 37: Tillamook, OR

We packed up this morning form our dispersed camping site in the Tillamook State Forest:

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We ended up backing up down to the road, which was only a few hundred yards, but it was so steep that the weight of the RV would pull the back end of the SUV down slope whenever I would turn the SUV to change the RV’s orientation.  We will be purchasing new rear tires next week.

We decided to head home by way of Tillamook, and stopped in to tour the cheese factory there:

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It was a great tour.  It was neat to see the place where Portland’s kosher cheese is made!

We returned to Portland in the afternoon, and are getting ready for Yom Kippur, which is tonight.

  See the trip map for today’s drive and our current location.

Day 36: Canon Beach, OR

We headed South this morning towards Canon Beach.  On the way, we stopped at Ecola State Park, where we could see the lighthouse known as Terrible Tilly:

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Tilly is three miles offshore, and was staffed and operated until the late 50s:

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Looking from Ecola northwards, we see Crescent beach and Canon Beach in the distance:

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We decided to hike down to Crescent Beach from Ecola.  The coastal forest is very lush:

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Examining a banana slug:

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Crescent Beach was beautiful in the mist, and we found many, many whole Sand Dollars, something I don’t remember ever finding as a child.

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There were interesting sea caves at the north end of the beach:

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Marine life abounded:

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The kids poked at the anemones to observe them retract their tentacles:

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The kids found and old rope for swinging:

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The fog had cleared quite a bit by the time we headed back:

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Here’s the hike.  We were out at low tide, so on the map it looks like we were walking in the water:

 

That afternoon, we walked though Canon Beach’s quint downtown and built sand castles on the beach:

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Tonight we’re camped on State Forest land outside of Nehalem.

  See the trip map for today’s drive and our current location.

Day 35: Astoria / Warrenton, OR

This morning, I rode 32 miles from Warrenton to Seaside and back.  I left Warrenton in the dark, and it was not yet sunrise by the time I reached Seaside:

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I rode down to Seaside on 101, but took back roads to get back to Warrenton.  It was beautiful!

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We drove across the bridge to Astoria and visited the maritime museum there:

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This genuine coast guard boat was even more vertical than the photo implies, note the exhibit railing at the bottom of the photograph which is in reality horizontal:

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The museum was very well done and worth the visit.  Next, we clawed our way uphill to the top of Astoria to visit the Astor Column:

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After ascending the narrow spiral staircase, we were treated to some amazing views:

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After the Astor Column, we stopped at an Astoria city park for a couple hours.  The kids enjoyed both the playground and the adjacent skate park using their Razor scooters. I may have put on my roller skates and given it a whirl myself.

On the way back to Warrenton, we visited South Jetty, the rock wall built in the late 1800s to narrow the mouth of the Columbia to increase the flow rate which reduces silt build up as the Columbia empties into the ocean.  The observation deck looks out onto the ocean side:

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We again stayed at the Warrenton Home Depot this evening.