Sunday, September 3, 2017

Northwest Road Trip - September 2017 - #1

Randy and I are taking a road trip to the coast of Oregon, Olympic National Park, Lynden, Portland, and Crater Lake. I am going to try to blog about it. If it seems like it makes more sense, I'll move the entries to their own little blog, but for now, I'll use my "Heart & Mind" blog.

We started our trip on Saturday, September 2. I took Friday off to get some laundry and packing done. I ended up working quite a bit (responding to emails), but I did manage to do some laundry, cleaning up, and packing. So we left the house pretty early Saturday, which was my goal.

At first, I thought I would not take any photos out the car window. Those often just do not turn out very well. But after a while, seeing scene after scene that I wished I could take pictures of, yet knowing that if we stopped every time I wanted a photo we'd never get anywhere, I gave in and took some photos from the window.

I love the contrast of the black oaks on the golden hills. And the shadows of the oaks. And fences.
Grapevines and hills.
Sunflowers. Reminded me of France.
Cows. And a sprinkler.
Barn-red buildings always seem attractive to me.
And old, weathered wood.
Cows, of course.
The smoke definitely limited visibility.
More trees, hills, and shadows.
I kept thinking, "The gnome mobile, the gnome mobile, we're rolling along in the gnome mobile!"
Photos cannot do justice to the dappled light coming through the trees.
Nor to their immense height
Thank goodness -- well, thank God -- for the people who preserved these trees for us to enjoy in the future. It reminds me of that saying Dad used to quote, "A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in."
Me in the Avenue of the Giants.
And Ran.
A tree cave.
And me in it.
Our car among the giants.
A huge stump.
An interesting plant we saw all over. Kind of looks like cattails.
Had to take a selfie in the big trees.
We stopped at Battle Rock, too. Reminded me of Morro Bay.
Reminded me of the lone pine on 17-mile drive, too.
Lots of smoke again.
Took a few pictures of the orange sun, too (although it looks white in the photos), and its orange reflection on the water.
The lighthouse at night.

The beautiful bridge nearby.
The moon above the bridge.
The first place we stopped several times to take photos was The Avenue of the Giants in Humboldt County. Oh my goodness, those trees! I posted on Facebook that it's hard to stop taking pictures. They are so impressive. They remind you how small you are. And also how short our time on earth is -- another reminder of our smallness.

"What is man that thou art mindful of him?" (Psalm 8). So true. I sometimes wonder why God created us. I know answers like, because he wanted us to glorify him, because he loved us, because it pleased him. Still, I wonder. We listened to an audio book while we were driving (more on that later), and at one point, the author says his mother told him she decided to have a baby (him) because she wanted someone she loved who would love her unconditionally. And then, to her dismay, she got "the naughtiest boy ever." It made me think of God. We're the naughtiest people ever, right? Some of us love him, but so imperfectly. I hope he thinks it was all worth it.

After The Avenue of the Giants we stopped at a place called Battle Rock and the Heceta Lighthouse. Then we kept going to the Oregon coast. Oregon has a bunch of wildfires and the smoke in the air limits our visibility a lot. But it also made the sun a bright orange that was pretty cool to see. And while we were looking at the lighthouse, it started to get dark, so in one direction we had the orange sun, and in another we had a beautiful, close-to-full moon. Amazing.

When we arrived at our hotel, directly off Hwy 101, right above the ocean coast, our hotel manager said something about it being in "Yah-hots". I said, "Oh, is that how you say it? I've been saying 'Yack-its". It's spelled Yachats. I had no idea how to say it. Don't know why I didn't google it or something. Pretty funny how wrong I had it. It reminded me of a trip years ago with our son Luke. We went through Skagit, WA, and he pronounced it "Skag-it." It's pronounced "Skaj-it." His pronunciation made sense but it struck me as hilarious. I said, "'Skag-it. That sounds like something you'd smoke: 'What are you smoking, skag-it?'"

We arrived at the hotel close to 9 and most restaurants nearby close at 9. We made it with 6 minutes to spare to one called Adobe Restaurant. We had a delicious seafood meal and got to sit by a window overlooking the ocean. Lovely.

Back at the hotel for the night, we left our window open a little bit all night so we could hear the ocean waves. With those soothing sounds and being on vacation with so little stress, we both slept really well, especially Randy. I woke up a bit before he did, took a shower, got dressed, walked down to the ocean, and he didn't hear me at all. He had a big sleep.

Today we ate breakfast out and then went to the lighthouse again. This time we climbed the path to the lighthouse and the lighthouse attendant's home (previous attendant -- now it's automated). We took a tour of the home. It was beautiful.

We stopped at a little church and museum, too, and enjoyed that. Then a quick trip to a used bookstore and now we're back at the hotel. I'm writing this on a picnic table outside our room, being serenaded by ocean waves.

The ocean and sky out the back door of our hotel.

The lighthouse attendant's home.
Walking up the path to the lighthouse and attendant's home.
View of the bridge from the attendant's home.
View from the path.
Flower along the path.
Selfie with the lighthouse.
Heceta Lighthouse.
Beautiful view from the path.
Me on the lighthouse attendant's home.
View of the lighthouse from the home.
Beautiful stuff in the attendant's home.

Don't you love the lintels around the doorways?
A parlor.
The kitchen.
Always love taking pictures of windows and imaging the original owners looking out them.
Window in the stairway.
So much gingerbread.
Some views of the bridge from the bottom.

Little log church and museum.

The original organ, that came over in a covered wagon.
Reminded me of the Dutch family Bible Dad had.


  1. What a fun trip you are having! Great photos and blog comments! Looking forward to following you guys on your trip.

  2. Thanks, Mark! Loved your photos of the begonia festival!