• travel

    Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area

    Earlier this week I posted a summary of the spots we camped and hiked along the Oregon coast, along with a more pic-heavy post of our beach combing adventures. Since we spent a lot of time up at Yaquina Head, exploring the tide pools and watching seals, I wanted to do a separate post with more pictures and info on the park, in case you’re interested in visiting! (Make sure you also jump over to the final post in the series with pictures from our hike inside the Devils Punchbowl!)

    Yaquina Head Lighthouse

    Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area is a federally managed park three miles north of Newport, Oregon, offering lighthouse tours, hiking, tide pools, and bird, seal, and whale watching from the cliffs. There’s also an interpretative center in the park to educate you on the area. You’ll need a federal parks pass or a $7 day pass to enter the park; it’s open seven days a week from sunrise to sunset.

  • travel

    Beach combing from Coos Bay to Newport

    Earlier this week I posted a summary of our two-day adventure along the Oregon coast from Coos Bay up to Newport. I wanted to post a few more in-depth guides to the specific places we stopped along the coast, with tons more pics of our adventures!

    Today I have a bunch of pictures from all the beach combing we did on day one. We started out in the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area, a forty-mile long coastal playground extending north of Coos Bay. You can swim, kayak, surf, hike, go beach combing, sandboard, rent a dune buggy, or just roll out your beach towel for some lazy sunbathing.

    Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area

  • books

    Book review: The River Wife

    The River Wife(Total disclaimer here: I put this book down about halfway through, but I’m leaving my thoughts for the part I did read.)

    The River Wife is one of those books that I both enjoyed, and didn’t. Beginning with the New Madrid earthquake of 1811 in Missouri and ranging through to the bootlegging days of the 1930s, it’s an interwoven story of the fates of multiple women linked together by a shared family history full of hope, sorrow, secrets, and violence. If you’re a fan of historical family sagas or American Gothic meets frontier adventure, then this novel sounds like the perfect pick for a long afternoon curled up in your favorite reading spot.

    So, what is it that made me DNF?

    Basically, I would blame a simple mismatch of book and reader at this time. The River Wife moves like the river in its pages, slow and steady, lazy and meandering in many parts, with occasional hidden bursts of speed. Agee’s lines unfold in a slow, dreamy fashion that’s perfect if you’re in the mood to savor a slower-paced drama, but I found my attention wandering. I put this aside for now and may return later, but in the meantime I’m going to pick up something with a faster pace and see if that better suits me.

    The River Wife, by Jonis Agee (393 pages). 2007. Historical fiction. Three out of five stars.

  • animals,  travel

    Two days in Newport, Oregon: where to stay, explore, and more

    If you follow me on Instagram then you know I recently spent a week road-tripping with my partner through Oregon, with a focus near Newport on the coast. I’ll be putting up more posts over the next week with tons of pictures as well as in-depth details from our explorations. Today I’m starting out with a quick round-up of where we camped and hiked, along with links so you can plan your own trip in the area.

    Oregon Dunes near Florence, Oregon

    We started in Coos Bay, which is about two hours south of Newport; at Coos Bay, we turned north on highway 101 and spent a full day driving up to our campsite so we would have plenty of time to stop and take in the sights. We spent a second day taking in sights north of Newport. I definitely recommend giving yourself two to three days to fully take in all this area has to offer! Keep in mind that our trip was by car, but the area is also very accessible to those traveling by motorcycle, RV, bicycle, or on foot. Also be aware that park and camping fees vary widely based on your mode of transportation.

    At the end of this post I’ve included several different options for traveling to Newport from a variety of major PNW cities, whether you’re heading south, north, or west.