Sunday, September 23, 2007

Last Trip Before Summers End - Part I: The Oregon Coast

Yes, even though I have so much to do, I decided to play "hookie" and take a slam-out trip down to the Redwoods - those beautiful Ancient Giants of Humbolt County California. I visited as many lighthouses and I could along the way - but the really amazing thing about the trip was the weather: Sun! That's right folks, sun on the Oregon Coast; no rain, heavy wind, hoizontal sand, but sunny, warm, above 70 degrees and a breeze that was ever-so-slight.

I wanted to share some images of the Oregon Coast and the Redwoods, for those of you that haven't made it out to the West Coast yet or for those of you that do live near these feats of nature - get out there now while the weather is fantastic...

We first headed down I-5 to Eugene, which took us to Florence, on the coast. Our first stop was the Upquah Lighthouse. This is a beautiful, functioning and well maintained lighthouse on the Southern Coast of Oregon.

We next stumbled upon the Coquille River Beach. This was a find - mostly empty and the beach is absolutely beautiful. It's at the very bottom of the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area (perhaps the reason it was deserted, and that was great), so there was a spattering of dunes with flat, open beach. I forgot how much I missed the breezy salt air...

Before we headed out to the beach though, we had to visit the Coquille River Lighthouse- 1896: This lighthouse guided boats safely across the shallow beach at the mouth of the Coquille river until 1939, it was then abandoned and replaced by an automatic light. But, in 1963, the Oregon State Parks Division acquired the lighthouse and some surrounding land (from the Army Corp of Engineers), and they restored the lighthouse in 1978! Right now, and I actually didn't know this, there are only 8 remaining lighthouses on the Oregon Coast. The Coquille River lighthouse was the last one built and it is on the National Register of Historic Lighthouses

Visiting the lighthouse here, I was happy to see that it was once again, in the midst of a face-lift. It gave me renewed confidence in our State Parks that this beautiful treasure wasn't left to rot. I captured a great shot of my Honey (Jason) contemplating the lighthouse (and other important matters I'm sure)...

This beach was an ideal spot for taking pictures.

It had flat AND hilly terrain, while the sun was starting to set - it think it was around 6pm.

I love how the light worked with shadows on the driftwood and grassy hills.

Heading further South to Gold Beach and stayed the night, but we woke up early to head even further South to the Avenue of the Giants...

Part II - next Sunday.

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