Oregon or Bust!

Trip Start Sep 10, 2011
Trip End Sep 17, 2011

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Flag of United States  , Oregon
Saturday, September 10, 2011

We got up at that God awful hour of 4am to begin our trip. Grouchy does not begin to describe how I felt this morning. SOOO tired. But we made it to the airport without  mishap, and I managed to catch a few zzz's on the plane, although just a few. It is a strange feeling to be traveling by air almost 10 years to the day after the 9/11 attacks. By the time we made it to Portland, the excitement of the trip gave me enough adrenaline to keep going. We got our car and took the long route to Seaside by way of Astoria. This route follow the Columbia River and actually took us into Washington Sate for a while. It is cool to see the different kinds of trees here. The whole landscape looks like an overgrown Christmas tree farm to me. But I love trees, and these are beautiful. The Columbia River is amazing too. SO wide. Lots of ocean going barges and vessels carrying freight. Lots of logging here. Sad to see all those trees cut. After a two hour drive we made it to Astoria, an old town but a really cool one. It is built on a hill where the Columbia River meets the Pacific Ocean, and driving the streets you think you are in San Fransisco!  Very hilly! There are lots of Victorian homes and cool shops and restaurants. Wish we had more time to snoop around here, but the main reason I really wanted to see this place is to climb the Astoria Column. So we did. It is on a hill on the highest point in the town, and it looks like a lighthouse that has these murals painted all over it and it is a tribute to Lewis and Clark, because this is where they reached the Pacific Ocean. You climb 164 steps in a spiral staircase and I have a bit of a fear of heights but it wasn't too bad. At the top there is a landing you can view from and it is a stunning view. In one direction you see up the Columbia River, in another the Pacific Ocean, and in another the Young River and the Lewis and Clark River. Well worth the extra drive to see this. After that we make our way to Highway 101, the highway that will take us the entire coast of Oregon down to California. It's a short drive to Seaside where we check into our hostel. The hostel is ok....an old motel, so we have a private room, but the guy checking us in was quite a character. We walked to the beach in time to see the sunset. Wow, what a beautiful beach. I wasn't expecting that much from what I had read, and the beach town itself was awfully touristy and tacky, but the beach was beautiful and the sunset was too. There is a memorial right on the beach marking the end of the Lewis and Clark expedition. This was the farthest they came. I can see why...who would need to go any further???? After watching the sunset we caught a bite to eat at a local burger joint, and the sleeps came back in full force. So we made the hike back to the hostel, enjoying the antique car show convention that was in the area. There were more antique cars driving around the beach than I have ever seen. Really nice ones! Back at the hostel I sort of wanted to stay up and go to the campfire and music jam session they were holding at 10pm, but Art was tired and I had to admit I was too. We went to bed at 9:30pm, after being up over 20 hours on only 4 hours of sleep, and slept like a log. And so ends our first day of the vacation we've been planning for over a year. It was a full, fun day. How lucky I am to be able to explore this beautiful country. Thanks for joining me via this blog!   ~ Beth
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Caroline on

Hey your trip sounds awesome! I didn't know you were on vacation this week!I will miss you.

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