Saturday, March 27, 2010

A Perfect Day at the Tide Pools

The Man and I labored over what to do today. Last night, we tossed around a few ideas including a trip to the Benedictine Sisters monastery in Mt. Angel and going to the coast. Neither of us really wanted to drive all the way out to Mt. Angel, and neither of us thought the coast would be much fun. I've geocached much of the territory around Newport up through Lincoln City, so that was out. We aren't into browsing touristy gift shops. We don't like being on the water. And everything at the coast is expensive. Finally, after remembering our last near-death night at the coast, we decided to face our fears and go for it.

We didn't leave Corvallis until 1:30pm, a very late start by most standards, but low tide wasn't until 5:00pm this evening, so there was no reason to get there early. Upon arriving at the Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area, we paid the hefty $7 day-use fee (they used to be $5!) and parked at the interpretive center. The building is new and quite nice, though I didn't learn anything that I know of. We first walked out to the trailheads and hiked Communication Hill, the tallest hill on the property. It was a nice half-hour hike up a decent slope. The views weren't spectacular, but they were pretty good to the south.

After the first hill, we walked down to the old quarry tide pools... which have all filled in with sand. Other than four harbor seals, the only thing we saw was tourists. It was less than we'd hoped. Another long walk back to the car for food and water. And then another walk over to Cobble Beach. We braved the enormously-difficult-to-walk-on cobbles to look at tide pools. Mind you, we'd been walking almost two hours solid already, so it was quite nice to be able to squat down and peer into the water at anemones, star fish (sea stars, whatever), hermit crabs, and tons of California mussels. Only once did we get surprised by a very small wave that was about as deep as an ordinary puddle. We didn't even get our socks wet inside our shoes (thankfully!).

We walked back to the car, drove into town to get some food, and high-tailed it home. We got home around 6:30pm. We both lucked out of sunburns, phew! No trinkets to remember our day, but I took quite a few pictures which are headed to the blog soon. The coast is a nice place to visit about once a year... maybe twice. We had our one perfect day of the year, so I'm satisfied. :)

2 comments:

MissKris said...

OK. The next time Dear Hubby suggests we go to the beach, we're going.

Lockwood said...

It was lovely here in town, too. I had my doubts; the early overcast seemed like it took forever to burn off. I'm looking forward to your photos!