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Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Nice Surprise in Newport

We decided to spend an extra day at Mallard Creek RV Park & Golf Resort, only we didn’t spend it golfing and we actually didn’t spend it at the park.  We decided to leave the RV at the park and head to the beach at Newport, OR.  (83 miles away).

On the way we found the Harris Bridge (another covered bridge).  This one was about 2.5 miles off of Hwy 20 near Wren, OR.  It is down a road that progressively becomes more rural the further you go.  This bridge was built in 1929.

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Harris Bridge, 1929

We then planned to find another bridge that was supposed to be at mile marker 17.  Except when we got to MM18, the bridge was there and we were going too fast to stop with traffic on our tail.  So we put it off until the way home.  This bridge is the Chitwood bridge, built first in 1893 as a regular bridge, and finally built in 1926 as a covered bridge.  It is still in use today.

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Chitwood Bridge, 1926 version

When we got to the coast, it was time for lunch, so we headed to Depoe Bay (about 12 mi north) and our favorite place there, the Chowder Bowl.  We have been going to this restaurant for many years now since our boys were both young and willing to come along.  The interior has a train theme and has a model train running along the ceiling.  The interior was just redecorated and really looks great.

After lunch we went across the street to the seawall and saw this tour boat coming out into the surf from the marina.  It was really bouncing in the waves as the wind was about 25mph.  Hope these tourists have their sea legs!

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Tourist boat leaving Depoe Bay

Also along the seawall, Carol got some great shots of gulls and squirrels, probably looking for humans to give them lunch!

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A friendly gull looking for a handout

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Gull’s friend squirrel appears to be begging for food.

Then it was on to Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area.  This is the home of Yaquina Head Lighthouse, originally called Cape Foulweather.  It is the tallest lighthouse on the Oregon coast and is still used.  You can climb up this lighthouse, all 111 steps and we did that.

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 Yaquina Head Lighthouse

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Fresnel Lens

The Fresnel lens at the top projects a beam 20 miles out to sea warning ships of the dangerous shoals.  Also from the lighthouse, you can see a rock formation in the water covered with several species of birds.  According to a film in the visitor center, there are over 25,000 birds on this rock this time of year.  Not sure how they got all the birds to stand still to be counted.  Must be like taking the US Census! <g>

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One ,two, three, twenty-five thousand, three hundred and six or was it seven?

Also in our travels, we came across 2 survey benchmarks.  These are bronze disks cemented into the ground all over the USA.  They are usually put there by the US Coast and Geodetic Survey or the Department of the Interior and they are used by surveyors as a reference point to start their surveys from.  There are over 130,000 of these guys all over the USA, so keep your eyes peeled and see how many you can find!

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USC&GS benchmark at Yaquina Head Lighthouse

IMG_5533 US Dept. of Interior benchmark at visitors center

I think this picture below really sums up our day!  Surf, sun, and sky combined with the scenic coast made for a very memorable day. 

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This just says it all!

This great day does come with a cost though.  I’m going to have to deal with Carol always wanting to come to the coast every day!

PS:  Thanks, Carol, for the great pics today!

1 comment:

Margie M. said...

That last photo should be on the website for the Oregon Tourism Bureau. (or whatever they call it) Awesome!