Saturday, September 24, 2011

Out and About

After two days of clouds and rain (well, really, what did we expect in the Northwest?), we were thrilled to finally see the sun. So off we went on the Three Capes Scenic Loop - Cape Meares, Cape Lookout, and Cape Kiwanda.

First up was Cape Meares with its very short lighthouse - only 38 feet tall.

The view from the lighthouse was spectacular, even with the ever present fog on the water.

Continuing to Oceanside, Donna led us to a place she had visited before where, at low tide, you can walk through a tunnel to reach another beach. Here's Jan ready to brave the dark.

It never got completely dark or I wouldn't have done it. This is the view out the other end.

I had to go just a little farther to catch the waves hitting the rocks.
Which might have been pushing my luck since the tide was turning. A rogue wave surprised us and while Jan and Ron dashed up the rocks to higher ground, I ended up with wet feet for the rest of the day. (You know the old joke that if you encounter a bear, you just have to be faster than your hiking partner? Well, I am the person that the bear would catch.)

Unfortunately, Oceanside was actually the end of our loop since the road between Oceanside and Netarts is currently closed. The problem began in March when the road slumped due to heavy rains. At first they were able to keep one lane open, but as the problem escalated the road was closed. Some enterprising person even printed up t-shirts that say 'I survived the Great Divide'.

So we backtracked and went to Munson Creek Falls, just a few miles south of our campground. It's the highest on the Oregon coast at 319 feet, but not too photogenic with all the trees in the way.

But we really loved the short hike to reach the falls. I don't know if it really is a rain forest, but it sure seemed like it to us. I felt that if I stood still too long I would sprout moss.

We stayed very close to the Tillamook Air Museum which is housed in the largest wooden clear-span structure ever built (according to the Guinness Book of Records.) The hanger was built in 1943 to house blimps that were used for anti-submarine coast patrol and convoy escort. Ron toured the museum and although he appreciated the 30 airplanes on display and the information on the blimps, he said the movie showing how they built the structure was the most interesting. He highly recommends it if you're in the area.

I know the hanger doesn't look that big in the picture so I'll give some stats.
Length - 1072 feet
Height - 192 feet
Width - 296 feet
Doors - 120 feet high, six sections each weighing 30 tons, 220 feet wide openings.


  1. Stayed in that area for about 10 days a year ago. My husband was stationed in Hebo, and he spent a lot of time in Tillamook. That's how we got to the west coast--to revisit the past.

    When you were at the air museum, did you see the basketball hoop up at the top of the hangar door? Someone had a good sense of humor.

    Love reading anything and everything about the coast of Oregon.

  2. The bear thing - you just have to be faster than the slowest one in your group. So- the bigger the group, the better chance you have.

  3. I love the air museum. Spent many enjoyable hours there a couple of times. I just wonder who is the lucky guy that gets to change the lightbulbs on the lamps up on the ceiling.

    Didn't know about the tunnel, I'll have to check that out next time we get out to OR to see our granddaughters.

  4. With views like that, the tunnel is definitely worth worth it. Beautiful.