Monday, September 10, 2012

DAY 20- Chocolate, Cars, & Cheese!

I ended up staying the night at the “Hilton” of the KOA campsites.  The facilities for this KOA were deluxe and they even had a free pancake breakfast that they served in the morning at their kitchen building.  The night before, I had gone to a chocolate and wine tasting that they held at the main KOA store.  It was chocolate truffles cut up and then served with a red wine that was infused with chocolate.  It was chocolate heaven!  The wine tasted like a chocolate version of Bailey’s and was very yummy.  So yummy in fact that I bought a bottle of it and took it back to my tent site. 
Photo- My campsite at the "Hilton" KOA.

I almost drank half of the bottle while I sat at the covered picnic bench at my campsite with my plugged in computer surfing the web on my computer till it was bedtime (midnight).  Did I mention that I had a tent site where I had power and water?  It was also fenced in and rather private; too cool!

Next, after breaking camp and grabbing my free pancakes, I headed south along the coast on Hwy 101.  It was misting rather heavily most of the morning since about 7am shortly after I had gotten my camping gear packed up. (Thank goodness!)  I had asked a gal at the pancake breakfast if this was considered rain in the northwest.  “No, not yet there but it’s on its way,” she answered.

So it was some wet driving towards the south for the next 14 miles.  It never full rained but the misting got to a point of a good drizzle.  I drove about 5 miles under the speed limit because I wasn’t sure how the roads were when they were wet here.  In Utah, the roads get awfully slick when they get wet.  I think that I was frustrating some of the other drivers behind me and I took every opportunity to get over into the turn outs so they could whiz on by me.  I just didn’t want to chance it.
Photo- Car show in Seaside.

Seaside was the next town that I came to.  It’s a vibrant little community along the beach area.  They were also having some kind of hot rod car show along their main street area; only all of these cars were taking all of the parking along the street.  They also had the street closed to other cars.  It was rather fun to walk among the cars and the misting seemed to be finally waning a bit. 

But I still ended up purchasing a much needed raincoat at local store.  It’s not that I didn’t have one at all but that the one I did have was for my cycling.  It has bicycle grease on it from riding around with my bike in the back of my car.  I went to several different shops and finally found an inexpensive men’s raincoat that I liked.  I walked down to the end of the street where there was a lovely turnabout and plaza area of the town that overlooks the beach.  There were a lot of people flying kites along the beach.  T was rather fun to watch them.
Photo- The wonderful view of Cannon Beach from the south of town.

Next it was onto Cannon Beach which came highly recommended in the 1001 Places to See Before You Die book that I’ve periodically been using to help me along the way.  I lucked out and found a parking place at the end of a street just off of the beach.  I just walked over to the end of the street but didn’t go out on the beach.  I didn’t want to worry about sand in my sandals or my socks. 

Yep, I’m doing the socks with the sandals thing that is like a Utah thing.  MAN! And I used to hate that when I would see that but after living somewhere for over 20 years I guess you pick up some of the habits of the locals.  What the Heck! (Which is another Utah-ism, because they don’t say hell! They consider that swearing.  But then it doesn’t tend to hail there much either so you can’t choose to say you were using the proper word to describe precipitation either. Oh HECK!)
Photo- Cute little courtyards nested along with shops in Cannon Beach.

I walked around the main street of Cannon Beach; mainly, through some of the galleries.  I was particularly liked the art gallery in the Cannon Beach Mall called Haystack Gallery.  It had a beautiful original watercolor painting from Steve Hanks.  And another artist that I really like was Michael Schlicting who had some amazing ocean scenes done in watercolor.
Photo- A self-supported cyclist on Hwy 101.

Next, I stopped by the first viewing area just south of Cannon Beach which had a better view of the overall beach.  While there two self-supported touring cyclists I had passed earlier stopped at the viewing area too.  I talked to them for a bit.  This was their first tour of any sort and they had started in Vancouver, BC and were on their way to San Francisco where they would fly back to Ontario, Canada.  I wished them luck and when they saw my Utah plates they said that a bike tour of southern Utah was next on their list.
Photo- I took a self-guided tour.

Behold the power of cheese!  I next went to Tillamook where I took a self-guided tour of the cheese factory.  It was interesting reading about the process and then viewing some of the processing from a second floor observation area that overlooks the production floor.  Then I came back down stairs where there was an area that you could sample some of the cheeses.  I would’ve bought some cheese but I really had no way of keeping it much past the afternoon and even the smallest package was a bit much for an afternoon consumption for me.

I turned onto Hwy 6 and started heading towards Portland where I would be staying the night.  I drove through the very dense Tillamook State Forest which seemed to make a very winding road to drive on.  Then, it was on to Hwy 26 which was a double lane in each direction.  I was able to pick up some speed, and before I knew it I was near Portland.  I managed to find my way to the Sellwood area where I was renting a room for the next two nights from a homeowner that I found on the website.  A friend had given me the website to check out.


  1. Can't wait to hear about Portland! Everyone I know seems to have visited that city (except for me) and comes back raving what a fun place it is. Enjoy!!

    1. Hi Di!
      Thanks for your comment and I hope you liked the Portland write up. But you need to come visit Portland.