Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Pisst, You Want Some Candy?

I am getting so confused. With the rain, the new camp sites, and the sightseeing, I don’t know exactly what we have done each day. The best answer is to post what we did and hope to get it in the right time frame.

The days at Carl G. Washburne were filled with more beach explorations, a couple lighthouse visits, and some more clam chowder.  Drove south to Heceta Head Lighthouse and hiked up to the viewpoint.

Heceta Head Lighthouse.
When we arrived one of the volunteers quickly said that we had to climb up to the overlook where we could get the best shot of the light in the house. As we scampered up the steep hillside I could just hear the volunteer talking to the other volunteer saying, “That’s four more for me!” Both of them snickering and shaking their heads.

I got a good shot of the light and then we slipped and slid back down to the lighthouse level. I imagine that volunteers get a bit bored and would be constantly making up games and stories using the visitors as their guinea pigs.

I guess it was worth the climb.
With the hike at the lighthouse behind us, we drove into Florence and looked around the downtown area. We had a good meal at the Firehouse Restaurant and Lounge. We continued the chowder challenge by tasting their five-time award winning chowder. We all agreed it was good!

Back at Washburne we ate dinner and played our usual game of cards. It was raining hard so we all hit the sack at Oregon Coast Midnight, 9:00 PM.

Umpqua River Lighthouse.
Monday we packed up and drove down to our next campground Bullards Beach. There was a break in the weather and this yellow orb filled the sky with light and warmth.  We found a camp spot and then walked the 1½ miles to the beach. It was so nice to be out and about without our heavy rain jackets on.  Once back at the rigs we played more cards laughing at all the stories we shared.
A couple of real comedians.
Bandon by the Sea was our next day’s area of exploration. We started by driving to the Coquille River Lighthouse and looking around there.  Next, we drove to Face Rock scenic viewpoint and looked at the impressive offshore monolith.

Bandon provided us with several hours of exploration. We ate at Tony’s Crab Shack, logging their clam chowder in our competition. I cannot figure out exactly why we ate clam chowder and not the crab and shrimp sandwich that was so highly recommended. It’s a CRAB shack for goodness sake, nothing was said about clams!

Art made from recycling beach junk.
After we ate and laughed, we walked to a store that should be outlawed for the good of all mankind. Cranberry Sweets & More is a nice shop that sells all sorts of candy. The reason it should be outlawed is that they cut up a million different candies, and put them in bowls all over the store, and you can taste any of them you want.  IT WAS A FEEDING FRENZY! I casually notice a couple bowls of different chocolates and popped them in my mouth. Next thing I knew, I had four chunks of candy in my right hand, two in my left and my mouth was stuffed full of several chocolate-covered jelly things. I know I circled the peanut brittle bowl more than for times. I was out of control! I took a breath and looked around; everyone was doing the same as me! By the time we left the store we were so jazzed up on sugar that Grant drove out of town wrong way! We were trying to find a gas station but were so hyped up that we couldn’t see straight. The crash was awful, I still have a headache.
Just another funny event in the Can-Am Rendezvous, and we’ll just keep give’r the rest of the trip.

Coquille River Lighthouse.

Face Rock.

It's Wet, Yet We Continue

Yaquina Head Lighthouse.
When we go to the Oregon Coast, it seems like we always stay a couple nights at Beverly Beach State Park. The park's location is very central to many of the areas we like to look at and it gives us good access to either Lincoln City or Newport.  That’s where we stayed on night 5 and 6 of the Can-Am Rendezvous.

On out trek down from Nehalem Bay State Park to our nights at Beverly Beach, we stopped at Lincoln City for a little Outlet Mall shopping. Linda says it was a most successful trip. I failed to find anything I had to buy.

Then we went on to Depoe Bay where we did some whale watching and ate a scrumptious lunch at a place called The Horn. Which, by the way, got 4 out of 5 pluses on their clam chowder!

Well, well, thinking back I have discovered that I did not tell you about the world famous Can-Am Chowder Challenge.  It all started at lunch when we ate at Mo’s. We had their chowder and in conversation, made a comparison to the chowder the Linda had at the Wet Dog. We set up judging standards which included five areas: creaminess, taste, seafood, a balance of flavor and temperature. Each criteria gets 3 possible points.  At this posting have judged six establishments chowder and will post the results in the final post for the Cam-Am.

Linda and I made pizza for dinner and once we had eaten our fill we played cards, crashing into a cheese and pizza coma at about 9:30 PM.

The morning we loaded into the official Cam-Am touring rig and drove to Yaquina Head where we visited the lighthouse, or we at least walked around it. We were delighted to see eagles, harbor seals, and whales as we dogged the rain and the wind.

The marine aquarium at Newport never fails to be one of our favorite sightseeing stops. The day's weather predictions were bleak for beach hiking but were just right for exploring the indoor reaches of the aquarium facility.  We had a great time exploring all the exhibits.

We drove to the heart of old Newport and had lunch at Ocean Bleu Seafood. I added another bowl of chowder to our list of competitors. As we left the restaurant we could hear sea lions barks bouncing off the walls of the local canneries. We got in the rig and drove in search of the sounds. At the far end of the shopping area, we parked and looked out into the harbor. The barks of the sea lions were louder than ever so we walked to a nearby pier. Below us on six docks was a mass of sea lions. The sounds they were making were amazing.

We looked out across the bay to the breakwater and our jaws dropped. “Those aren’t rocks over there, they are sea lions!” Linda said. The breakwater was a mass of moving animals. Once again we were astounded. None of us had ever seen so many sea lions in one area. We all agreed that we could write the Sea Lion Caves off our tourist list on this trip.

We drove back to Beverley Beach where we climbed into our homes and let the rain pour down.
It was a quick drive from Beverley Beach to our new camp at Carl G. Washburne Memorial State Park. As we drove we checked out several campgrounds and took a side hike at Cape Perpetua, where we saw the Spouting Horn and Thor's Well.

At Carl G. Washburne Memorial State Park we got two great camp sites and then went to a walk to the beach. 

Crab and Squid.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Rendezvous Jour Deux

The rendezvous packed up and moved south, down the coast to Nehalem Bay State Park.  The park has about 300 campsites, but the rangers closed all the loops except for a couple. One loop is for reservations only and they have a restroom and shower. The one for the drive up campers does not have restrooms and showers. Drop-ins are expected to walk to the facilities in the reservation loop. Oh, and by the way, the men’s restroom that is open has only two toilets and one of those is out of order.

We blame it on our new government.

After getting set up, we loaded into the Can-Am Taxi and we drove to Ecola State Park where we braved the wind and rain to peer out into the misty fog at the Oregon coastline.  We could see about a quarter mile, and this took some doing because the wind was blowing at close to a hurricane force.  We struggled up to look over the edge, only to be blown back by the powerful gusts. It was fun, but we also got drenched.

Next, we drove to Cannon Beach where we took some quick pictures of Haystack Rock. The weather hadn’t changed so we retreated off the beach and found a window seat in Mo’s for lunch.  From this point, we watched the ocean and chowed down on various seafood dishes. Clam chowder has become the dish that all food stops will be judged during the rendezvous, Mo’s was rated very high.

We returned to our camp spot and ate dinner. Later on, we gathered for a couple card games before we turned in for the night.