After our family reunion, we headed south on US 101 which mostly follows the coastline. It's an up and down, over and around road through one tourist beach town after another, so the going was slow. That's fine, as long as you remember you're on vacation as is everyone else on the road! We camped at South Beach State Park campground just on the other side of the river you see in this picture. The park was full, but each camping spot was quite large and you don't get to feeling like a sardine as you do in some RV parks. We've found state parks to be a wonderful resource for camping as there is usually some historical significance to the area as well as nature programs for the kids, playgrounds and walking trails that make for a pleasant vacation.
We visited more lighthouses - there are two in Newport: Yaquina Bay and Yaquina Head. The one pictured is Yaquina Head lighthouse. It's located on a beautiful spit of land with spectacular views. It had just been refurbished so everything looks in tiptop shape. The black/white picture is taken at the bottom of the lighthouse looking up and up and up to the top - 104 steps. The guided tour of the inside of the lighthouse is quite popular, so it's best to arrive at 9 a.m. to get your ticket!
We walked down to the cobble beach as the tide was coming in and not too far out on the rocks you could watch the harbor seals playing in the water and sunning on the rocks. On another trip, the kids saw sea lions in the harbor. And DH got them all up early one morning to explore some tidal pools and see some crabs, anemones, etc. I stayed in the warm trailer and had a nice breakfast!
Of course, we had to have some time on the beach! The kids are fearless when it comes to cold water, as I was at their age. However, with age comes wisdom and less tolerance for cold so Mom and Dad stayed back in the dunes, which made excellent wind breaks. I was all cozied up in my hooded sweatshirt, hood up, cheerfully watching the kids having fun and doing a little stitching too. So everyone had quite a nice time.
One evening the laundry really had to be done, so we made a quick dinner for the kids, then left them to attend the evening program at the campground (it's sooooo great having some older kids!) while DH and I had dinner at Mo's, a regionally famous seafood place. I'd eaten at one in Lincoln City a few years back, but the original is in Newport so we dutifully stood in line and waited for a place at a table. Ended up that a larger table became available, so we asked the folks right behind us if they wanted to share a table with us so we could all get in quicker. It was fun getting to know them - and the food was great! Then we found a laundromat, did the laundry, then found a place with an internet connection, as we'd gone five whole days without an internet connection - gasp!
Next installment: The Twining Thread
For now I have to get the dinner dishes done, another load of laundry folded, and water the back garden. The chores never end! And please be patient with me as I try to catch up on my blog reading - I have over 500 entries to get through and I don't want to miss out on any of your wonderful projects. So it's going to take me awhile!