Oregon: Pacific Wonderland

My dad decided to take Monday off so he could take us on a tour of the coast. We headed west to the ocean then went north and south along the coastline (our trip took the shape of the letter "T") to see a sample of Oregon's beautiful landscape.

After living in Utah for a majority of my life I've seen my fair share of breathtaking, natural beauty, but there is something distinct and special about Oregon. Maybe deep down, a part of me is Oregonian and that's why I love it so much. Either way, I had a wonderful time exploring some of Oregon's beautiful terrain and I gained an even deeper appreciation for God's creations.

We stopped at a viewpoint over the ocean that included a cute lighthouse.

You can barely see the lighthouse over Matthew's head

We stopped at what's called Devil's Churn. It's this place in the coastline where the incoming tide has worn away the shoreline into a deep crevice. The tide was out when we visited, so I got a good look at the crevice itself. However, when the tide is high, the waves crashing into the crevice churn and spray and are pretty spectacular (look up videos on YouTube to get an idea).

Devil's Churn at low tide
 Along the beach there were tons of little tide pools that are teeming with aquatic life when it's warmer.

After Devil's Churn, we turned around and headed south. We stopped in Florence for lunch, and I saw a little diner that my boys would absolutely love.

Yes, there are full-size cars sticking off the top.
We ate at a place called Mo's that was right on the bay. When the tide is in, it looks like it's floating on the water. Matthew's lunch came with a souvenir frisbee, which ended up being his favorite toy on the trip.

After lunch, we continued driving down the coast. We stopped a few times to get a look at some huge sea lions sunning themselves on little islands. They're EVERYWHERE, and my parents say they're really loud. The wind was blowing pretty strongly so I didn't get a chance to hear them too well, though.

One of our last stops was at Shore Acres State Park, which has some beautiful gardens. There weren't a ton of flowers to look at because of the season, but I still got to see some amazing flora.

All of the trees in OR are covered in moss.
So, even in the winter the trees are green. 
This is one of the weirdest trees I've ever seen...
Apparently it's a "monkey puzzle tree." The leaves reminded
me of the bark of a palm or banana tree.
My dad is a camping enthusiast, so he also showed me some of the camping spots they've especially liked along the coast. In one of the campgrounds, there were a ton of these funny little tent-like "cabins." Apparently they're called yurts, and they're for people who want to camp without really camping.

Looks cozy, right? I guess they have a wood floor and beds and everything.

On our way back home, we stopped in Charleston for drinks. Charleston is one of those "blink and you'll miss it" seaside towns...basically a hole in the wall. The convenience store/grocery/deli was called Davey Jones Locker, and, according to the T-shirts sold inside, is considered the "cultural Mecca of Charleston."
Not really something to brag about, in my opinion...
 I had been a good girl during the trip, so I also got a treat!

Nostalgia...who doesn't love rock candy?

Our little excursion took us all day, and as we were heading inland around dusk, there were a bunch of elk grazing not far from the road.

While we were in the car, Cole called me because the boys needed a "Papa song" before going to bed. It was kind of fun for my dad to witness something he started so many years ago get passed along to his grandsons.
It was a long, tiring, but extremely entertaining day. I told Cole if he ever gets a job offer in OR to take it, because I'd move there in a heartbeat.
In the next post: Matthew's birthday and getting home by the skin of our teeth.


that's what she said...

I forget that you were up here! but it really is a beautiful place to live. I can't imagine ever moving away. camping, and mountain climbing, and beach, and lots and lots of hippies. ;)

Brittany (B) Michelle Kenner said...

WOW!! Oregon really is beautiful!

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