3 Day Oregon Coast Surf Adventure
This past weekend. BB and I headed out to the coast for a bit of 3 day surfing adventure. It was killer to say the least. We surfed better and better as the days went along.
In Portland we rented boards and suits with a double coupon from our Portland Chinook Book, saving ourselves $90. Then we strapped the gear to BB's old Volvo on a set of $30 Craiglist's roof racks. (another score)
We reached the beautiful coast in just about an hour 45 (even though the original Google maps directions we got were not the best) (p.s. when getting to Lincoln City go: 5 s, 99 w, 18 w to the 101s. no funny business= bingo.)
Our first stop was at Beverly Beach State Park. This park is gorgeous with tons of really nice private tent and Yurt sites hidden in the thick of the beautiful shaded trees just walking distance to the beach. The Yurt was outstanding and only cost us $35 for the night. It could've easily slept 5 for the same price. ( a serious future friends or family getaway bargain ). It had solid wood furniture including a bunk with a twin on top and a queen on bottom and fold out queen futon. Plus it had a sweet little deck, wall pegs for hanging up all of your gear, a broom and pan, a cute table with two chairs, a coffee table, a built-in electric wall heater, electric lights, a porch light, 3 big windows with screen and roll-down flaps and an awesome 4 ft diameter dome skylight. The 'backyard' of the Yurt was so tropical and lush that it seriously felt like we were in Thailand or something.
After a calm beginners day of surfing at Beverly we feasted on some much enjoyed veggie dogs cooked over the fire topped with canned chili. The perfect meal after a cold surf. Then of course we decided to go ahead and drink all of the beers that we packed so that we wouldn't have to buy anymore ice. Four quickly invented drinking games and 8 beers later, we were ready to hit the sack.
The Yurt gave us a nice pleasant wake as the skylight let the sun in through the trees. bliss.
Then we packed it up and drove North along the 101 through Lincoln City. Lincoln City is a pretty 'big' beach city compared to the rest. It has lots to do, a proper cinema and lots of shops and places to eat all along the 101. Some places seemed a bit commercial and developed while others managed to maintain the old skool grungy beach vibe I prefer.
Going off a tip from the dudes at the board rental shop back in Portland, our next surf stop was Pacific City. Pacific city is a little town surrounded by cool beaches and dunes so big you can sand board down them. It's a bit off the 101 so it's less developed except for cafe's, fish joints and coffee shops. We discovered that the Oregon Coast is by no means 'Starbucked Out', nor has Stumptown hit the coast either. It seems that every single no-name town had at least one drive-through coffee hut with some funny name attached. Not a bad gig really, I imagine it has very low overhead and you can just swing buy the Home Depot and buy one of their pre-built garden sheds and be on your way.
When we surfed at Pacific City just at the base of the Dune Mountain, as I like to call it, we stumbled upon a local long board contest. It was cute. The surf was okay. It got pretty windy later in the afternoon which made the waves rather choppy and blown out. Sticking to our DIY budget we did NOT hit the Pelican Brewery, right on the beach, which we heard great things about, but instead we opted to cook a nice meal of burritos with tomato, avocado, onions and garlic over my mini coleman stove in the sandy parking lot while chillin' in the late afternoon sun in our camping chairs.
The next stop was Rockaway Beach where we stayed in a classic beachy motel for the cheaper room without the ocean view. Rockaway is a rather seedy beach town with a seriously overpriced thrift store. No joke, mixed in with old copies of Life magazine they were seriously selling a jar of Private Selection Green Olives for $4. What!? We also happened upon a weird outdoor community dance in the main beach access parking lot where we witnessed old hippies dancing to Bananarama. It got pretty cold and windy during the beautiful sunset so we decided to run back to motel to generate some warmth.
We made ourselves a meal of freshly Coleman cooked indian pouches from Trader Joe's and watched a show on the local channel called, "OREGON, A DYNAMIC COAST"
The show pretty much went into saying how Oregon has one of the most constantly changing coast lines of all of North America and that sometimes people come out in the summer months, quickly fall in love and buy affordable beach front property, only to later discover that they lost feet off their property during the harsh winter storms. Soon they discover that their house will eventually entirely be taken over by the ocean. The show went into 'buyer beware stuff' and showed how you can have a home at the oregon coast as long as you are realistic with the weather conditions and get plenty of professional opinions and inspections.
The next day we headed out of Rockaway Beach and passed though Nehalem Bay, where we discovered another great State Park with cool Yurts that we'd like to stay at in the future. Plus we discovered a super cute local breakfast joint with a 45 minute wait where we bought a couple of awesome home made scones to go.
The next town along the coast called Manzanita was totally cute. It kinda reminded me of old skool parts of Laguna,CA. It had a couple of little organic farm fresh cafe's along with boutiques and a popular homemade pizza joint. Seems like it would be a nice place to rent a house with family in the future.
Oswald West State Park was the last surf stop on the trip. It was a gorgeous day. As soon as it reopens I'd like stay at the first come first serve State Park walk-in campground tucked back in the trees here. 'Short Sands', as the surfers call it, is THE most beautiful beach I've seen along the coast in a while. Visitors have to walk just about a half mile from the parking lot off the 101 along a creek surrounded by old-growth, moss covered trees before it opens up to a beautiful hidden cove for surfers of all levels .
After a long and wonderful day of great surf we headed up to Cannon Beach to grab dinner. Cannon Beach is a classic Oregon beach town with lots of cute boutiques, galleries, ice cream & candy stores and of course kite shops . We ordered ourselves a nice sampler of local seafood and clam chowder from the local dory caught fish and chips joint in town.
All in all this was a very successful mini getaway as it was packed with lots of discovery and possible on a low budget.
Not a bad way to spend a long weekend in Oregon.