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Posts Tagged ‘jedediah smith state park’

This time we went all of 41 miles to reach Crescent City, our last California destination for a while. We found the pretty little Village Camper Inn RV Park, did chores and had a quiet evening. Tuesday was my birthday and I celebrated it by taking a hike. We drove up a dirt road about 4 miles into Jedediah Smith State Park and headed down the Boy Scout Trail. 2.6 miles in, 2.6 miles out. Doesn’t sound like much does it? We were pretty tired when we got back.

But we rallied and I selected the Chart House for dinner, recommended by our RV Park manager. Alas, it was closed, so we settled for the Fisherman’s Restaurant and had very good fish and chips.

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153DG1728edediahSmithBoyScoutTrailBirthday over, the next beach stop was Bullards Beach in Oregon, near Bandon. A nice parky campground near a wonderful beach. The Coquille Lighthouse is a small marker on the junction between the Coquille River and the Pacific. Combing the beach, we found a delicate sand dollar, a barnacle, beach glass, a nice composite rock and delicately-colored pieces of shell. We’re gathering shells while we may; soon we’ll be heading inland.

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159MG4475BullardsBeachThe Cape Arago Highway runs south of Coos Bay and has a lot of variety: wide beaches strewn with driftwood, small coves, many sea stacks, a lighthouse and the spectacular Shore Acres State Park. Built by a rich man for his wife, natch, two mansions on the edge of a bluff burnt down but the formal gardens remain, tended by a volley of volunteers. We visited at the right time – the gardens are thick with rhododendrons at their height right now. We spent an hour marveling at the extravagant Rhodies. We also found a Monkey Puzzle Tree fun to photograph. Since it was chilly, we ate lunch in the observation shelter overlooking the sea. Having had our fill of peanut butter and ham (not together!!) we walked along the edge of the bluff and studied the strange formations that grew on the rocks below. Then we studied the strange habits of young men who were standing at the edge of a sea cave, apparently daring each other to go deeper in. Yes the tide was fairly low, but still…..

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190MG4569ShoreAcresSPWe returned to the car and headed further south. At Simpson Reef Wildlife Viewpoint, all kinds of seals were visible and audible, hauled out on the rocks to take a rest. They were too far away for us to tell what type of seals they were. Finally, we went to the end of the road at Cape Arago. We were too tired to hike down the steep trail to the beach, and began the return north. We did stop at a viewpoint of the Cape Arago Lighthouse but we were ready to book. That didn’t happen. To reach the Cape Arago Highway, the Garmin, our bipolar GPS system, had led us on a gravel, roller-coaster road for about 6 miles. I know there was a better way, but we didn’t have any local maps to get to a direct road. Returning home, the Garmin wanted to take us on the same road we had come in on. I continued north on the Cape Arago Highway, figuring we’d find a turnoff to take us to US-101. Nope. We drove about 8 miles north to Coos Bay before we turned south and drove 21 miles back to our campground. Bad signage!

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