We finally arrived home on August 23rd, 2014, almost three months since we left Mt. Dora, FL in early June. It wasn’t long until we were itching for some more camping; adjusting to a non-mobile lifestyle was kind of weird. We also felt the need to take advantage of the PNW summer before it slipped away. I had some friends that were already planning a weekend at Fort Stevens State Park on the north Oregon Coast, so we tagged along and got a campsite down the loop from them. One of our good friends (who joined us in Pacific City) wanted to come too and the boys decided this was an apt opportunity to get in a good run on their bikes. You know, the kind with horsepower.
We slept well after an evening of chatting with friends and some nighttime beach shipwreck exploring. The next day the boys and I hopped on the bikes for some more adventuring. Fort Stevens is in the top left corner of Oregon in between Seaside and Astoria, where the Columbia river meets the Pacific. It’s a pretty big park with various beach and river access areas, as well as an old concrete gun battery and the site of the wreck of the Peter Iredale. We rode out to the South Jetty, a part of the park I hadn’t seen before, to get some ocean views. There is an observation deck you can look out from but what was more fun was climbing around on the thousands of big rocks that form the artificial part of the jetty that was constructed to give ships easier passage into the Columbia river. Every now and then the waves would roll in and crash against the rocks, spraying water into the air. Our dear friend was unfortunate enough to be in the wrong place at the wrong time and got soaked! But the views were worth it.
Next, we decided to head into Astoria, one of our favorite coastal towns. Although technically it’s on the river, not the coast. We really wanted to take the bikes over the iconic bridge that spans the river between Washington and Oregon. It’s the longest bridge on the Oregon Coast Highway, and anyone who has ever been to Astoria will recall how beautiful it is. After some fun riding around, lunch was calling so we landed at Fort George Brewery. The craft beer scene is not just for Portland, and the Oregon coast has no shortage of delicious Oregon beer. We enjoyed a little jar-full to wash down our sandwiches and took a six pack to go. Our trip ended on a sweet note that night with beers around the campfire and our bus to call home once again.