Oregon is one of our favorite states. It is rightfully famous for its Pacific coast. While staying in Seaside we had the chance to tour some of the parks of the northern OR coast. Oregon parks are ubiquitous on the coast. One can nearly step from park to park they are co close together. We visited Ecola State Park, Hug Point Recreation Area and Ft. Stevens State Park among others. These parks offer great views and beach access. Cannon Beach is a popular tourist destination with a famous rock
Our route to the Oregon coast took us along the mighty Columbia River. It is so impressive. We found a free camping site at a Corps of Engineers area called Rufus Landing near John Day Dam. Certain times of year this area is used by Native Americans for salmon fishing using scaffolds. This activity is protected by treaty and would be interesting to see but just now we got to enjoy the riverfront views. There are busy UP and BNSF main lines running on opposite sides of the river. We also saw hundreds of giant white pelicans that call this place home. Just before dark a Columbia River Cruise Ship passed by and entered the locks to go upstream. We were so happy to find such a serene place an hour from Portland with incredible views.
Astoria is a historic town at the mouth of the Columbia River. Founded in 1811, it is the first American town west of the Rockies. It is named for John Jacob Astor whose fur trading company founded Fort Astoria. Its a great small town with a vibrant art scene, micro breweries and a great Farmers Market all summer. The Astoria Column was built in 1926 and affords great views from the top while the murals spiraling around depict events in the early history of Oregon.
Fort Clatsop is a National Park Service site nearby that has costumed interpreters in summer. Lewis and Clark’s Corps of Discovery spent the winter of 1805-06 there after reaching the Pacific coast on their epic journey. They had nearly starved on what became the Washington state coast before the Clatsop Indians shared the abundant elk on the Oregon side. The Clatsop saw trading opportunities. Lewis recorded only 12 days without rain and of those only 6 with sun during their stay from early December to late March. They couldn’t wait to leave the area heading back to St. Louis. The reconstructed fort is an excellent replica. While there we took a ranger led kayak tour on the Lewis and Clark River where the fort is located.
Oregon is one of our favorite states. The climate is mild, its not too crowded, they have great parks and beaches, the people are friendly. We stayed in Seaside OR at the Thousand Trails RV Park there. Seaside is the oldest resort town in the state and its a very busy place in Summer. Their Fourth of July fireworks show is among the largest on the West coast. We plan to return in the Fall.