Oregon Coast 2005

April trip up the California and Oregon coast. A week trip that covered about 1300 miles or so.

Crazy things that some folk will build to attract tourists. Fortunately the place was closed so it was a perfect photo opportunity. The 80 looks like a toy...

The California-Oregon border on the 101. Yippee - we're about to to cross into Oregon.

The view from the 'porch' of the yurt we stayed in. Lake Marie in the Umpqua Lighthouse state park. A very nice place to stay and just a VERY short drive to the Umpqua dunes area. Not more than 1/3 mile behind those trees are sand dunes - quite an amazing change of terrain.

A hiking trail that loops around Lake Marie has a spur that you can take to the dunes. In the background you can see the Pacific Ocean. The kids are coming back up the trail after playing in the sand.

Driving around the dunes. $10 for an ATV permit (good for 2 yrs) and $10 for a sand flag and you're in business to have as much fund as you want. It had been raining before we arrived and so the sand was quite packed/damp - made it much easier to drive around (24psi was low enough).

The Umpqua part of the Oregon Dunes structure is one of the smaller areas to drive around - but still several miles in length and a couple of miles wide at the widest section. There's many many miles of dune areas north and south of Umpqua that are opened to vehicles - quite a sand playground.

The kids digging holes and the wife comfortably reading...

Our oldest having fun sliding down one of the dunes - of course coming back up is the payback...

Lots and lots of forest in the background - right up to the dune edge. Being weekdays that we were at the dunes allowed us to basically have the place nearly to ourselves. Only the odd ATV to be seen (we saw maybe 1/2 dozen in the several hours we played there during a few days' visits).

Our oldest kicking up sand - having way too much fun.

Windy - we aren't driving backwards ;-). While driving along, the sand is so clean and so smooth that it is sometimes difficult to figure out if it is flat or curving away from you - quite eerie.

The Heceta Lighthouse. Supposedly the most photographed lighthouse on the western seaboard if not the whole US. Quite a pretty spot and it is the twin of the Umpqua lighthouse (built to the same plans). Arrive there Thursday - Monday and you can get a free tour. We luckily got there Thursday - not knowing about their schedule.

Close up view of the lighthouse. The bottom windows have been cemented up to prevent idiots from smashing them. The lighthouse (as is the Umpqua) is active.

Heading home. Just a stop at one of the turnoffs on the 101 lead us to a spot that gave a great view of the coast. Further south we hit fog and the 'coast' disappeared.

Happiness for some - sadness for others (us), nearly the end of our holiday.