Typically I am camping during this time of year but do to a lack of planning early enough to make a group camp site happen my wife and I decided that the coast was a good option for us. It meant less car packing time and effort, less grocery shopping, less hassle.
Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE camping and is one of my favorite STAY-cation activities but I am a social creature and admit to not wanting to go camping when our camp experience is not one of a large site that all of us (15-20 friends) can enjoy together. For me it is about interacting with everyone and that sense of community that developes in a large space that everyone shared together rather than someone stopping by to say hello for 5 minutes before heading back to their own site when you are each in your own small site. In my experience most people are not willing to do that. Sad really!
So…this Labor Day my wife and I were joined by some good friends on the Oregon coast for the holiday. Specifically we stayed in Newport. You know Newport right…headquarters for Rogue Brewing?
I get ahead of myself though. Let me step back and give you the high lights. We picked up our friends daughter in Portland as they went to OSU to watch the Beavers play in the season opener. We took 3.5-4 hours to get to Newport where we were staying because of all the traffic. Figures everyone and their mother would want to be on the coast when it is gorgeous outside. Once we got into Newport we went by the Rogues warehouse where they have a MASSIVE sale out of the warehouse during all of the holiday weekends. My wife bought 4 cases of 22’s. 2 Irish Ales (I think) and 2 of Moms. Both are light and should be a real treat in the upcoming months.
Once we met up with our friends we had dinner at the restaurant portion of the Rogue Brewery where I had the Reuben and must admit it was fantastic. I had a the Irish Ale I think and called it good. We then all headed back to our small rooms to wind things down for the evening.
I briefly checked out me eBay auctions that were ending to see how things were shaking out and to answer any last-minute questions before calling it a night.
The following day we walked the doggies to the nearest beach access for walkers which was a 1/4 mile away and let the dogs have a little fun. We then proceeded to breakfast which was sadly the worst service I have had in a very long time. Our 10 minute wait turned into 30. Our food took about 40 minutes and was either cold or was under a heat lamp and made everything terrible. They forgot a juice, gave us and extra coffee, which they charged us for and were overall not very good on the service front.
During breakfast we noticed the fog was coming in but as the day before was fantastically sunny we were optimistic that it would burn off. This was important as our friends were planning to boogie-board as was their yearly tradition. Sadly the fog did not burn off and their water activities were cut short. Not that the fog made the already frigid Oregon coastal waters less so but it cut the visibility down quite a bit to where it was just plain dangerous to be in the water.
Oblivious to our friends plight my wife and I went down the coast on 101 towards Florence to where we will likely be camping next year at Cape Perpetua. We drove to the 800 foot elevation above sea level to see an ocean of fog. (I will be posting pictures shortly.) It was also sunny and warm, funny how the sun does that. 🙂
We then drove down to the Newport waterfront where we took our dog – Underdog (we call him Undie) – for a walk he will likely not forget. There are tons of wonderful smells and sounds he is unaccustomed to experiencing and he was on full dog alert. We walked out on one of the piers and watched the Misty come back in from a day of crabbing and fishing. My wife had never seen fish being cleaned before so we stayed and watched the very skilled people who in part make their living by cleaning and cutting up people’s fish once off the boats. We saw a couple of salmon, some ling cod, many rockfish and crab as the bounty of the day.
Further down we came across the sounds of sea lions which were sunning themselves on some of the wood docks that appeared to exist for the sole purpose to give the seals a place with which to sun and make noise from. In all there were about a dozen. (Pictures soon to come)
As we went we were also checking out the local shops for places to eat dinner at. We did find a place we later came back to called something like the Noodle House although I am sure that is incorrect.
We made our way back to our hotel room and watched Winter’s Bone through Netflix streaming. Once complete we spoke with our friends about our days and decided to each do our own dinner thing and would meet up later. My wife and I went to the Noodle House (incorrect name). I had Beef Noodle Soup or Pho (F-U-H) Noodle Soup and sake. My wife had a vegetable soup made with noodles that were made from buckwheat and had sake. We shared some pot stickers. It was excellent and made me SO happy.
Later that night we spontaneously stopped by a local ice cream/chocolate shop for dessert. We met our friends they’re for a brief tasty treat and then went to Mazatlan Mexican Restaurant for margaritas with complimentary chips and salsa. We all shared about days adventure and laughed and took in the glow of tequilla hitting our heads. We then headed home for the evening. I was exhausted and went straight to bed.
The following day we went to a restaurant called the Challette (I believe) and had a much improved breakfast. In short order we were under way and heading home. My wife and I only met heavy traffic in Lincoln City but then had clear sailing until we got home.
The cats, Manu and Axle, were both doing fine as if they needed a humans help and took little note of our arrival. After we unpacked I checked my eBay auctions, answered some emails and ate dinner that my wife had prepared while I was online. We had a wonderful stir fry with veggies from our garden.
We wrapped up the night with an Eddie Murphy movie called A Perfect Gentleman. We had a few chuckles and then I had to call it a night as I had to be in to work at the unwholesome hour of 4am.
…And that was my weekend.
More to come…