Monday, September 26, 2011

Days 88 - 90: Cape Disappointment, WA and Astoria, OR

So we left Seattle and decided to head back to the coast for a couple of days.

First thing Angie did was hang her hammock and catch up on some zzzz's.

Our home for a couple of days.  Cape Disappointment is the southwestern point of Washington State where the Columbia River meets the Pacific.  It was supposedly named by John Meares, a British fur trader and explorer, who was trying to find his way inland from the Pacific Ocean and missed the mouth of the Columbia River in 1788.  He was disappointed

Treacherous waters.  Literally hundreds of ships have wrecked on these rocks.  There are two lighthouses in the area and both were within short hikes of the campground.  You can just see the Cape Disappointment lighthouse on the cliff.

Lewis and Clark were here!

The Cape Disappointment lighthouse, which is still in operation.

There's a fort and several old structures nearby which were really fun to explore.

Fort Canby was in operation from the Civil War until after WWII

This was the foundation for one of three big six inch guns stationed here during WWII.

Interior rooms of the old fort.

This room housed the six inch shells.

Later in the day, after some lunch, we hiked over to the North Head Lighthouse.  From looking at the map, it seemed our campsite was very close to the lighthouse but the trail started a couple of miles away.  We figured that surely someone had figured out a short cut so we went off in search of one.  We found it but it required climbing up a steep muddy cliff and crawling thru thick forest.  Here's Angie emerging onto the regular trail.

By the time we got to the second lighthouse thick fog had moved in and we couldn't see anything!  Bummer.

It was too steep to go back down the way we came so we had to take the long way back to our campsite...

The following day, we drove across the Columbia River into Astoria, Oregon.  They have this restored trolley car that drives back and forth along the waterfront.  The conductors point out landmarks and give lots of information about the town's history.  Astoria is the oldest town west of the Rockies, even older than San Francisco!  Oh, and we should mention, the movie "Goonies" and a few others have been filmed here.

This is "the Column" in Astoria.  It's 125 feet tall and offers fantastic views of the surrounding area.....

.....unless it's completely foggy, which it was when we climbed it.  It was pretty windy up there too.  I'm squinting just to keep my contacts from blowing away.

Next: Portland!

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