Wanna know how much stuff we just packed into our last day here at the bottom of the Oregon Coast?
1. Drove down towards Brookings, OR and stopped to check out the campground at Harris Beach. This campground looks amazing and it's now on our list of places to stay next time we come through. This is Harris Beach:
2. Then, a 1.5 mile hike in the northernmost coastal redwoods near Alfred Loeb State Park:
This place is like a fairy tale, with the occasional huge, old growth redwood.
3. Then we headed into the Port of Brookings to find some lunch. The fish & chips place was closed (what??). I consulted Yelp for the next highest rated place and found a spot called Zola's Pizzeria, so we caved and had pizza for lunch on the Oregon Coast. But it was some fantastic pizza!
While we were eating our pizza, two ladies were at the register ordering their lunch. They each said they wanted a glass of Chardonnay with their lunch. The cashier asked, "House chardonnay, or Coppola?" The ladies answered "Coppola. Could you put a couple of ice cubes in please?" Ummm, so why bother getting anything other than house chardonnay if you're just gonna put ice cubes in it? That's my question.
4. Oh and guess what else was going on down at the port today? CRABFEST!
We wandered around a bit, bought some local homemade salsa, watched the crab races (crab races!!!), and then picked up a couple of cooked crabs.
Crab will be for dinner tomorrow night because we're both too full from pizza to eat dinner tonight.
5. Before we left the port we drove around along the river (the Chetco River) over where it meets the ocean, and we noticed a couple hundred people hanging out on the jetty watching something.
Turns out a fishing boat went aground (or sank?) coming into port last night around 8pm. Nothing was happening...the boat was just sitting there, but it caused a huge town gathering.
6. Next we headed North from Brookings toward our next hiking destination, and pulled over along the way to check out the "highest bridge in Oregon" -- the Thomas Creek Bridge, which is 345 feet high. There's a big brown National Park-like sign advertising a viewpoint for the bridge, so we pulled into the huge parking area they've set aside and walked toward the bridge. Huh. Not a very great "viewpoint" in my opinion:
Not really worth all that nice signage. Here's a shot through the cyclone and barbed wire (but still):
7. Next stop/next hike: Natural Bridges Cove in the Samuel H. Boardman State Park and Scenic Corridor. We parked at the trailhead and headed out along the Oregon Coast Trail (another mile and a half or so).
View of one of the Natural Bridges from a bridge on the trail:
We hiked along the trail for a bit, turned around, and on our way back took the trail down to Natural Bridge Cove. Whoa.
This is some gorgeous bit of coastline down here. The hike was beautiful, and steep (especially down toward the bridges) and it gets a little hairy out over the bridges (totally gave me that squeemy feeling), but here we are (picture that open arch of water below us, and steep steep cliffs on either side of us, leading down about 100 feet to the aggressively churning ocean):
I might look calm here, but in reality I can't wait to get back up to the gnarly tree path were there are things to hold onto.
Neither of those above photos shows the certain death you'd face if you so much as slipped. Oh lordy. Kevin just showed me a photo he took while he was standing out there. Aaaaauuuugh.
But the views from up here: stunning.
I think that time we were in Bodega Bay and hiking the Bodega Head trail regularly for a week or so, when that one guy who was with his friends fell from the rugged cliffs into the rocky ocean below and was never found again...and we watched the search and rescue helicopters searching for him from our table at Gourmet au Bay...I think that really freaked me out.
8. Next, we headed to Myers Creek beach for some beach hiking at sunset. This is a gorgeous beach with big rock formations as far as you can see.
Kevin picked a good rock to jump up onto as an unexpected wave snuck up on us:
Nice sand texture:
A whole sand dollar!
This rock has a tunnel through it:
We walked another couple miles on Myers Creek beach and left just before sunset.
Number 9 will be hot tubbing at our campsite later this evening. Yay!