Oregon Beaches and Forests

Bob and I took a spontaneous quick trip to the Oregon Coast this past October, mainly because I missed the ocean and because I wanted to check out the Columbia River Gorge in autumn.

The coast did not disappoint. We started in Astoria, where you can drink bear right next to honking sea lions and you can visit the house from Goonies. Then, we slowly made our way south.

One of our first stops was Ecola Point, which looks like this:


And then we got down on the beach, and it looked like this:


but what you can’t see is that there were SURFERS and we could pretend we were in a scene from Point Break.

I was surprised to discover that wet sand reflects the sky


and thus began a brief photographic obsession that continued to Cannon Beach,


where I tried to take photographs of the reflections of Haystack Rock,


and reflections of Bob and Haystack Rock,


and reflections of the rocks next to Haystack Rock and the seagulls next to those rocks,


and reflections of a seagull eating something gross next to Haystack Rock.


At some point I gave up on reflections and focused on the leading lines made by the clouds and the tide.


Notice how the water is rolling in right by the camera? Yeah, well, I didn’t notice that at the time and ended up with wet jeans and wet hiking boots, and you know how wet hiking boots smell . . . yeah.

Here’s a view further down the coast, at the Rocky Creek State Scenic Viewpoint.


We could see whales spouting in the distance, but the pictures were decidedly unimpressive, so I’ve spared you.

Though we had rented a van and swore to camp in it every night to save money, we decided to spring for a hotel in Yachats and so had time to go down to the beach at sunset, where the waves were splashing impressively and a romantic fog (mist?) was rolling in.


Bob managed to look very stoic while gazing out upon the impressive waves and romantic mist


but not quite as stoic as this seagull.



The next day, we traveled down the coast to the Heceta Lighthouse


before turning inland and heading toward the Columbia Gorge, where I was determined to photograph some waterfalls and some fall foliage and hopefully together.

But–and here’s why I’m a bad photographer–most of the Gorge was closed due to “post-wildfire hazards,” so the only waterfalls I saw were Latourell Falls (and I could only photograph the base of it because it was raining and I kept getting drops on the lens)


and Multnomah Falls.


Then, we sadly had to give up on waterfalls and drove on to Cascade Locks and I silently scolded myself the whole ride for not doing more research before these trips but then we ended up camping ABOUT 200 YARDS FROM AN AWESOME BREWERY called Thunder Island Brewing Company and I remembered that the best parts of my trips are usually the parts I don’t plan for.

The next day was foggy. At first, I liked it because it made for some interesting pictures.




but then it was kind of annoying because we did a hike to Lost Lake, but it was so foggy that we couldn’t even see the lake and didn’t even know there was a lake except there were some guys standing in it fishing.

I’m not exaggerating. This is the “view” of Lost Lake that greeted us when we got there.

lost lake.jpg

But, hey, there was some fall foliage, so mission accomplished.


And then we spent one last rainy day in Portland, and I got to hang out in an adult arcade called Ground Kontrol, where I could play Area 51 and drink hard cider AT THE SAME TIME.

The moral of the story: Oregon clouds have silver linings and those silver linings taste like marionberry cider.


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