‘The ocean is a central image. It is the symbolism of a great journey.’-Enya
The next leg of the B and my trip was to drive the Oregon Coast and for his sake, I hoped the weather cooperated! B really wanted to see Face Rock in Bandon. We had a couple of options from Ashland, where we stayed after our disappointing day at Crater Lake: cut across or go south, cross into California and then drive the entire coast. As there was only an hour difference and we’re proud Californians, the latter it was! As we were in separate cars, we decided to meet at Face Rock, that way we could stop where we wanted.
Traveling, albeit briefly, through California was heartbreaking. The wildfires in Northern California have been widely reported but crossing the border and seeing scorched earth as far as the eye could see…there are no words. Eventually, the famed redwoods appeared (we traveled through the fringe areas of the massive redwood state and national park system) and I crossed back into Oregon! I have never been to Southern Oregon so pulled off immediately to put my toes in the sand!
I should say, if there is a scenic view/turnout, I will be there! When I drove into Oregon, I pulled off at the first turnout. There was beach access that was deceptive because I ended up on a steep trail down to the water, it just kept zigzagging. But it was, as my love of the ocean is well documented across the blog, worth it! There is just something about the Pacific Coast, it just feels like home! One day, I will have a beach cottage on the ocean to hear the waves…
I also stopped at the start of the famed sand dunes. Holy shit, was it windy! I felt like I was being sand blasted. It was quite painful and I was grateful for my sunglasses and regretful for wearing shorts. The dunes continue up for about a hundred miles and you can see them throughout the PCH drive. There are lots of companies that provide dirt sledding, dune buggies, horse back riding… and one day, I will slide down a dune! I stopped at Fred Meyer to get gas and the backside of the parking lot were dunes. I have never felt so small getting gas and a twix bar!
I met B at Face Rock…it was very cool but I didn’t realize the face faced the ocean! This is also the last time I saw B until later that night. As we took a bit longer of a drive and needed to check into our hotel in Astoria, Oregon by 9, I had to head straight there. I have traveled throughout the Central Oregon coast, so while a bummer not that big of a deal.
I made it to the Atomic Motel, a cute, ’50s inspired place, and had enough time to view the sunset! I used Apple maps to see the closest beach to me and, coincidentally, one of the closest was Sunset Beach! It was stunning…the images of the sunset itself have not been edited in any way, the colors are that vivid. I was so glad to share this with B, even if we weren’t together for most of the day. We tended to visit the same spots so could share what we loved. I hope to visit the Oregon Coast one last time before I move but I am excited to explore the Washington Coast!