Scenic Road Trip: Columbia River Gorge, Oregon (Part 3)

along the Columbia River, OR © lynne medsker

Well, it’s finally here. The last post from our ten-day camping/travels around beautiful Oregon and Northern California. Sometimes I think all it did was whet our appetite for more! Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. 🙂 We spent many hours our last two days down by the Columbia River, admiring the views and watching whatever action was available. Often that action included trains! One was right by our campground, another directly across the river. And they were BUSY! along the Columbia River, OR © lynne medsker

along the Columbia River, OR © lynne medsker

along the Columbia River, OR © lynne medskerIt was a relaxing spot, although very windy! Many of the other campers were there to wind-surf those winds. Somehow we never got to see any of them in action though. Just another reason to go back one day! Mark even has some fun with my camera while we hung out by the river, the longer we were there the more his enthusiasm developed. 

Of course a sunset and beer is about the most perfect way to end a trip (okay, my preference would be wine!) and that’s pretty much how we wrapped it up!

I hope you enjoyed the beautiful scenery…

Lynne

Scenic Road Trip: Columbia River Gorge, Oregon (Part 2)

old bridge, columbia river gorge © lynne medsker

Along with the natural beauty of the Gorge area shown in my last post there was some pretty spectacular architecture in the area too! Our favorite was The Vista House at Crown Point!

view from Vista House © lynne medsker
view from The Vista House

The Vista House, Oregon © lynne medsker

The Vista House, Oregon © lynne medsker

The Vista House, Oregon © lynne medsker

The Vista House, Oregon © lynne medsker

The Vista House, Oregon © lynne medsker

Originally built in 1918, it sits high on a bluff with amazing views to go along with it’s beautiful design. You can read about it’s history here: http://vistahouse.com/history/the-vista-house-story/.

Only one more post left from our trip, which makes me a little sad! Guess I better be planning a new adventure soon. 🙂

Scenic Road Trip: Columbia River Gorge, Oregon (Part 1)

columbia river, oregon © lynne medsker
columbia river, oregon © lynne medsker

Our last two nights in Oregon we spent camping along the Columbia River. The entire area was beautiful, with more sights to see than we could possibly explore in what time we had left. But we did our best!

Mt. Adams, Washington © lynne medsker
View of Mt. Adams, Washington from the river
fishing the river © lynne medsker
fishing the river
cascade locks © lynne medsker
Cascade Locks, Columbia River, Oregon © lynne medsker

On of the most amazing things was just driving down a scenic road and being able to see so many different waterfalls, right along the road!

oregon waterfalls © lynne medsker

oregon waterfalls © lynne medsker
multnomah falls

oregon waterfalls © lynne medsker

oregon waterfalls © lynne medsker

oregon waterfalls © lynne medsker

oregon waterfalls © lynne medsker

I could have spent days traveling that one stretch of road, hiking the trails to other waterfalls and photographing all the beauty. As it was we had hours. What motivation for a return visit!

Scenic Road Trip: Oregon Coast (Part 2)

rocky coast © lynne medsker

From our tide pool walk earlier in the morning we continued our journey north along the Pacific coast of Oregon. We passed by the historical railway but it was closed.

coastal railroad, oregon

train © lynne medsker

I managed to capture a few pictures through the fence for my nephew who is quite a train buff.

bridge over water © lynne medsker

crossing the bridge

After crossing this amazing bridge the next treat we came to were the immense sand dunes! They stretched for miles and miles.

sand dunes © lynne medsker

sand dune, oregon © lynne medsker

It was really hard to capture the scale and height of these dunes, some were over 500 feet tall! We decided to treat ourselves to an hour-long tour in a two-seater RZR and had quite the adventure going up & down the hills of sand.

Mark & RZR © lynne medsker
Mark in the drivers seat
Lynne & RZR © lynne medsker
Me behind the wheel!

I’m sure my screams could be heard for many miles! We took turns driving but I don’t think I ever got Mark to scream, only to laugh as I screamed and drove at the same time straight up and over the mounds of sand. sand dunes, oregon © lynne medsker

After recovering from that fun we headed north again, look for the conclusion of our day in the next road trip post!

Scenic Road Trip: Oregon Coast (Part 1)

sea star
sea star

Our seventh day on the road was started with a tide pool walk.

tide pools
tide pools

Not at all how I had mentally pictured it, walking on sandy beaches peering into puddles full of interesting sea creatures! No, it involved clambering over kelp covered, slippery rocks, practically standing on your head to peer into the cracks & crevasses, reaching under slimy rocks in hopes that when you flipped them over there would be an interesting creature or two.

under a rock
under a rock

All that while keeping your balance and trying your best not to step on anything living. I failed at the last two several times, including one thudding fall onto a jagged rock. Ouch! But in between the challenges it was so awesome to view all these interesting creatures in their habitat.

sea star
another sea star
critters in the cracks
critters in the cracks

We were lucky to be there on a day of extremely low tides so there was lots to discover!critter

anemone
Anemone
covered in kelp
covered in kelp
hanging around
sea stars hanging around under the rocks

In addition to the critters we could see up close the sea lions were off shore just a bit, playing and making quite a racket! It was great to take this walk with one of the park rangers, she was great at helping us discover things and explaining how the different animals lived in this rocky place.

sea lions
sea lions

This was probably one of our favorite days of vacation! We saw & did so many things I’m breaking the day into three blog posts just to get it all in! Next post we’ll move from the rocky shore to the sand dunes, stay tuned!

Scenic Road Trip: Northern California Coast and beyond

It’s been a while since I’ve posted images from our trip west, the last one was from the Giant Redwoods. For today’s post we finally made it to the coast! I absolutely LOVE being by the ocean, a river, a lake….heck sometimes just a tiny pond will do! Having never seen the Pacific Ocean before I was excited to explore so we made a lot of stops along our route.

We started off near Klamath, California and by the time we made camp that evening we were in Oregon. Near Klamath we hiked down the side of a cliff to get a close view of the ocean, this little snail was on the trail. Despite the signs assurance that it was just 1/2 of a mile, the straight down & straight back up aspect of the hike was a brutal way to start the day. But we didn’t need to worry about getting much more exercise after that excursion!

The day started with a light fog/mist and then cleared off into a beautifully sunny day. Perfect for exploring the coast! 
I was more than a little obsessed taking images of the beautiful rocks and the waves that crashed upon them!  I’m fairly certain that the rest of these images were taken after we crossed over into Oregon. 


The afternoon sun just sparkled on the water!  We made it to a campground that night and were looking forward to the next few days…all of them spent along the ocean. Look for more images next time!

Lynne

Scenic Road Trip: Giant Redwoods, California (Part 2)

redwoods, california © 2011, Lynne Medsker

By the second day in the Redwoods I was overwhelmed by all the trees so I refocused a bit and tried to find interesting details in the forests that we hiked through, although I still had to take a few more tree photos!

redwoods, california © 2011, Lynne Medsker
redwoods, california © 2011, Lynne Medsker
redwoods, california © 2011, Lynne Medsker
redwoods, california © 2011, Lynne Medsker
redwoods, california © 2011, Lynne Medsker
redwoods, california © 2011, Lynne Medsker
redwoods, california © 2011, Lynne Medsker

We caught our first glimpse of the Pacific the same day too, but didn’t get to really explore and enjoy it until the next day. So guess what you’ll be seeing next time?

Lynne