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Category: Travel

Fort Stevens, Ho !

Fort Stevens, Ho !

(You have to maximize the picture viewer to properly appreciate the pictures.)

I took a little time to go exploring the area. Since the Mount Hood (original name is Wy’East) area has snow and ice, Orion and I headed west to the coast. The northwest tip of the state was the goal, a trip that usually should take less than two hours. It took me five – I just had to stop and explore some of the nooks and crannies along the way. And I passed up on many more.

The weather was typical Oregon January: on and off rain with occasional gaps in the clouds that let some sun shine through. Fog blurred some of the sights, and yet created a fantasy landscape in the hills.

Sauvie Island was the first major stop. It is nice and flat with many trails and should be good for easy bike riding. There are some very nice and new looking houseboats here. I saw some others along the way that looked like they were on the verge of sinking.

Rainier is a little town stuck to the hillside along the river. It is opposite Longview, Washington, which also has a port, and smokestack industries. Spelling does not appear to be important to the marina owners, but then all the slips were empty.

One of the downsides to winter exploring is that the days are short. If I was going to make it to Ft Stevens and back before dark, I had to get a move on. The highway wound up into some hills with nice views of the river and opposite bank. The sun was peeking through the clouds and hinted at some pictures. Just as I pulled into the Bradley State Scenic Viewpoint it started raining again. Sigh. I still took a few pictures, explored, and made use of the facilities. Then onward.

Somewhere along the way I was treated to a fantasy landscape draped in wisps of fog, or was it smoke rising from the Fire Swamp? Whichever, I couldn’t turn around on the hill so I had to go to the bottom and backtrack until I could find a spot to take pictures. (Note to self: Always bring the tripod! Better yet, leave one in the car, along with the go-pack.)

On to Astoria… I didn’t explore the town much, just a brief stop by the river-front, then to a Starbucks, and on to the park.

This part of the coast is sand dunes, no doubt sediment from the river, etc. Very different from the rocky coasts to the north and south. There’s so much to explore around here! Anyway, look at the pictures. The park looks like a nice place for easy biking in the summer. By the time I finished a quick tour of the park, it was time to head back.

The town of Seaside is built on the dunes, with some houses just a short walk away from the water. And there is not a barrier island or reef! Let’s see: rising seas, changing weather patterns, and no earthquakes in a while to relieve tectonic stresses – a perfect place to build! There are some nice neighborhoods, such as the gated one for horse owners. There are stables, lots of white fences and green grass on top of the rolling dunes. Very pretty, and expensive, I’m sure.

Just south of Seaside I headed back, reluctantly. (Orion didn’t want to turn the wheel! It would have been much more fun to continue south on 101!) Took 26 and skirted the northern edge of Tillamook State Forest.

Left at 8:30 and got back at 5:30

Visit to Robert

Visit to Robert


In August 2017 I met up with Robert, a friend from grade school whom I had seen last in 1973. Shirley Jean and I attended a conference in Seattle and I stayed with Robert and met his friends Clémentine and Adrien, the founders of Wings for Science.

We hiked along the Wallace River, visited Rosario Beach, drove down Whidbey Island and took the ferry to Mukilteo. After some seafood at Ivar’s we returned to Bothell.

Robert’s airplane is an experimental, painted Subaru Blue, the same as Orion (my Forester), and white. We had a pleasant flight over the San Juan Islands.