Just a few miles down the road from our present home base (South Jetty Thousand Trails resort just south of Florence, OR) is the Oregon Dunes National Recreational Area. This is a fee area if you decide to park and play for the day. Our National Parks Senior Pass was sufficient for entry although we were just there for a ride through.
Access to the beach is limited to a few well marked paths with parking lots and porta-pots. This one was for OHV’s—Off Highway Vehicles.
We started out in bright sunshine, weaving our way around sweeping curves
and flat stretches. The ocean and beach are just over the big dunes on the left. As we cruised along the big dunes we ran into the marine layer—literally. Riding through the marine layer is like riding through a big cloud.
Just a few feet made a big difference as the road veered away from the dunes.
4 or so miles north on this road brought us to this parking area. The paved road ended here but the unimproved road continued.
View to the east. That’s the south jetty with a fishing pier on the Siuslaw River with north Florence on the far shore.
One of the deep sand paths to the beach. Contrast the foggy sky on one side and the bright blue sky just across the parking lot!
We figured these people are crazy. That water is freezing and the air temp in the marine layer felt as it it was in the 50’s. We were chilly riding in the sunshine wearing double layers.
We stopped for an info board and learned that originally the dunes were bare. Then European Beach Grass was planted in the early 1900’s to stabilize the dunes.
Wetlands on east side of road.
Our next place to explore was Old Town Florence at the south edge of the city and along the river.
Friends Paul and Marsha recommended we stop at the Magnolia Bakery.
I noticed this sign on the side of the building.
This place was tiny with only four tables. That’s a mirror at the end. Notice me taking a picture of me taking a picture.
We sat at a table and shared a giant cinnamon roll. Yummy but would have been better warm. This place uses organic, gluten free ingredients. Unfortunately they were out of fresh bread.
We toodled around the rest of Old Town and discovered that a few more of the buildings bore historical signs.
Having explored our back yard, we rode home to rest from our exertions. About 6 pm the marine layer found us. We turned on the heaters and tucked in for the night.
Planning on lighthouse visits tomorrow.
Louise and Duane