First, for our Vet’s: Thanks for your service to your country!
We’re in beautiful Florence, Oregon for this blustery Veteran’s Day 2010. We arrived 2 days ago to a drenching, cold and windy storm that delayed deployment of the rig by almost 2 hours before we got it all done. First, hook up the power, then inside to dry off and get the electric heaters going. At the next short break in the rain, outside to hook up the water hose. Then back inside to dry off. A couple of hours later, boredom sets in and I go out IN the rain to hook up the TV cable and also hook up the sewer hose at the same time. I’ve got my priorities, after all.
Florence is the northernmost tip of the Oregon Dunes, a 43 mile long stretch of coastline that is covered with towering sand dunes, that in turn are covered in all kinds of vehicles designed for climbing sand dunes. We can’t hear them from our campground, which is in the Port of Siuslaw Marina, but they are clearly evident on the main drag through town. We highly recommend the Port of Siuslaw for camping, by the way. Our main reason: although the campground itself is probably only about 10 acres, they have at least 8 wireless internet repeaters scattered about and the internet connection is fabulous! Oh yeah, the rate is also darn good at $165 a week with full hookups, not bad for a resort area!
The weather ushered in The Changing Of The Wardrobe. When we packed up last summer, we put all the winter clothes into our spare suitcases and stuffed them into the cargo hold. This morning we got them out and swapped all of the shorts, tank tops, and tee shirts for long pants, long sleeve tees, sweaters, sweatshirts and wool socks. With only so much room in our closet and dresser, we need to use a dual-wardrobe strategy.
Yesterday (Wednesday) we got up at the crack of dawn, actually 30 minutes BEFORE the crack itself, and got an early breakfast so we could drive up to Newport, about 50 miles, and visit Bill Lackman. Bill is the guy that sells the Crab Max, an innovative crab net that can be cast out from the beach or a dock with a fishing rod. We found him (and his Crab Max’s) on the internet and since he was so close to us, we dropped by his house and picked up 2 of them to take advantage of crab season in Oregon. In this state, it’s open 12 months about of the year, and when we are in Washington after Thanksgiving the season will be open there too. Fresh Dungeness, woo hoo! After picking them up we decided to just keep driving north.
We found ourselves at the Tillamook Cheese factory about lunch time. I highly recommend this self-guided tour, because it’s free! And you HAVE to try some of the ice cream at the factory store, it made a great lunch! And, for Elaine, here are some authentic plastic cows:
We toured a little on the way back, stopping at a fabulous little farm stand to get some fruit.
We also got side-tracked by Mother Nature who was putting on quite a show on the coast with waves up to 20 feet that were whipped up by the storm.
They were breaking as far offshore as ½ mile, and in Depoe Bay they were pounding on the sea wall and sending spray over the highway. Take in a glimpse on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tx-CarcF15Q (turn up the volume!).
Today we tried our hand at crabbing with the Crab Max. We are quite used to using larger “pots” and a boat, the way we like to do it on Orcas, but this was very different. When we fish with pots, we bait them and toss them overboard, returning several hours later to haul them up and see what we got. Using the Crab Max, we toss them off the dock and stand there holding the tether in our hand until we feel it jiggling. That’s when the crabs have found the piece of bait (we use fresh chicken) that is pinned to the net. Then you haul away and the tight line shuts the trap like a clamshell, trapping the crabs inside. The good news: we had PLENTY of crabs to catch. The bad: no keepers, they were either females or too small to keep. Oh well, there’s always tomorrow!