The morning was very foggy and quiet so we slept in a bit. Today was going to be a travel day, as we needed to go northwest to get closer to the Oregon coast. We were also going to be leaving the mountains and going to a lower elevation. Yesterday, at the rim of Crater Lake we were at around 8000’, by the end of today, we were at sea level. So it did get a little warmer.
We left the Mill Pond Recreation Area around 10 am and drove west until we joined the interstate at Roseburg. From there we headed north on I-5 to Eugene. We stopped in Eugene to take a shower at one of their rec centers. They will let you shower for $2. I think they allow it so the homeless can get cleaned up.
After showering we drove to the closest LDS church to eat lunch and use the WIFI. I uploaded another blog post and we planned out our next steps. After lunch we stopped at Costco for gas. It was nice to have gas back around $2.65/gal. We were in Eugene for about 3 hours.
From Eugene we drove further north to Salem. From Salem, we left the interstate and followed highway 22 north and west to Tillamook. This was another winding highway through the woods and hills. There were a lot of farms and some dairies along the road, especially as we got close to Tillamook.
We stayed the night at the Blue Heron French Cheese Company, in north Tillamook. They allow RVs to stay a night or two in their grassy field, among all their antique vehicles and farm equipment. After we cooked dinner, we went to their store and shared an ice cream cone. This is a popular place to stay, by the time it was dark, there were probably 20 vehicles parked for the night.
It was a nice place to camp. It was pretty quiet, but you could hear the highway a little bit through the night and morning. This morning the animals on the farm started making noise. They have a burro that started hee-hawing around 6:00 in the morning. It was also very foggy and wet this morning.
We left the Blue Heron French Cheese Company early in the morning. We wanted to get to the Tillamook Creamery just as it opened at 8:00 am. We went on the tour, sampled the cheese and browsed the gift shop.
From Tillamook we drove north on highway 101. This highway parallels the coast and bays of the Pacific Ocean. It’s a narrow and curvy road, so you can never go very fast.
Our first stop was Ecola State Park. This had a high cliff overlook above the beach. We took some pictures and walked a few of the trails.
The next stop was Fort Stevens State Park. The first stop was at the black sand beach with the remains of an old shipwreck. We walked the beach and ate lunch. I had to raise the top of the van so the fabric could dry out from the rain the night before.
After lunch we went to the historic fort site of the state park. There were several old fort structures to walk through, and a visitor’s center with a movie about the history of the fort. It is the oldest military structure on the west coast of the US. It was built during the Civil War.
After stopping at Costco for gas we went to the Lewis and Clark Historical National Park. They had a movie about the Lewis and Clark Discovery Expedition and a re-creation of the fort that they spent the winter in.
The next stop was Astoria Oregon. We went to the Astoria Column and climbed the steps to the top to admire the view and take pictures of the Columbia River and the surrounding sites.
Our last stop for the night was the Astoria shoreline boardwalk. Not much was open, but we walked along docks and looked at the ships.
Our next goal was to find a place to camp for the night. The first two spots we had identified were fenced off by the lumber companies. But we found a spot in the forest about 10 miles east of Cannon Beach. It was another dark and quiet spot. We slept well and had another good night.