Today we conclude our most recent stay on the Oregon Coast in my favorite town of Newport. For the last three days, we have enjoyed the hospitality at the Elizabeth Street Inn, Newport finest lodging. From the complimentary hot breakfast in the morning to salmon chowder and hot cookies each evening, you can practically “live off the land” at the inn. The flat sandy beach that runs for as far as the eye can see north and south from the inn is just begging for you to pause for a moment and get some sand between your toes.
While in Newport, make certain you include the Marine Discovery Cruise in your itinerary. Don and Fran Mathews put on the best marine wildlife cruise in the country and on this trip, we were particularly fortunate in our search for whales, with multiple sightings and two instances where the gray whales were seemingly showing off for our boat as they gracefully spouted and darted through the water. It was an amazing sight. I can’t remember seeing so many whales on one trip. There’s a marine naturalist on board, and you’ll drop a couple of crab pots on the way to the ocean and pick them up on the way back to the dock. That allows you to “meet” the creatures of the sea up close and personal. Time and money well spent.
We went on a sand dune buggy adventure Wednesday morning. Adventure barely describes it. Arriving in Florence in a light mist, 13 of us bravely (?) decided to try and trump Mother Nature. We bundled up and headed out to the dunes. Except the mist became a steady rain, and then a harder rain. Within ten minutes we were soaked to the skin, despite our poncho and trash bag “protection.” It was a time for leadership. Knowing the driver had a “point of no return” early on, I shouted for him to return to base. It’s one thing to brave the elements, it’s another to drown while trying to have a good time. A for effort. A cup of that great clam chowder at Mo’s in Old Town Florence and all was well with the world again.
Next stop, the Spruce Goose. And so it goes…