/ / Seeing the Beach for the First Time in 2013

Seeing the Beach for the First Time in 2013

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I’m so, so thankful Sarah and Mike were in Portland. They drove us everywhere and were the best tour guides around. Our second day in town we all drove out to Canon Beach for the day. 
The area just outside of Portland, and really the area all the way to the coast was just beautiful. Lush green beauty everywhere you looked.
The town of Canon Beach was just as scenic. By the time we had left I was searching the for sale homes for a place to call our own. 

The weather was overcast and just slightly chilly, but we dipped our toes into the Pacific anyway. 

As we made our way down the beach to the local tourist attraction spot, Hubs began mumbling something about this rock being from the Goonies.

Turns out he was right. This is in fact the rock from The Goonies movie. 

It looked kind of evil with all the white birds fluttering around and sitting on it. It was like a bird haven, because Lord knows nothing was getting up there to them!

As we approached we noticed everyone was flipping out over the smaller rocks scattered at the base. Upon further inspection we realized why. Every inch of the rocks were covered in barnacles. 
Little creatures squirmed and moved about, fascinating everyone. 

We could have spent hours playing with the little crabs and conchs. 

But then we noticed something even more amazing.

That’s right. That is a real live, orange, gigantic, starfish.

I could barely believe my eyes. I mean, I knew starfish were real, but I don’t think I realized they came in such a colorful variety. By the way, they were almost rock hard to the touch.

Leaving the beach we walked back to a little seafood hut we passed on our way in. I was feeling way past due for a boat load of seafood.

Living in South Dakota has made me appreciate fresh seafood in a whole new light. My mouth started watering just looking at the seafood case.

We noted the potentially sketchy name of the restaurant…

but the food was incredible. I went for the oyster burger.

The next part of our day turned into an adventure.

We realized that we weren’t going to make it back by the wineries before they closed as we had planned, so instead we drove a short ways to get to a trail Mike and Sarah had been wanting to check out.

It was beautiful, and possibly made more so by the overcast weather.

Please take note of where this next picture was taken. I’ll get back to it in a moment.

The trail itself provided the unique challenge of managing up and down it without busting our asses on the slick, mud-covered hills. 

Mike introduced us to the beauty that is the banana slug.

We eventually came to a fork where we had to decide to continue on to the summit, or take a small trail down to the beach. We went the beach route. 

And were so thankful we did because we found ourselves in starfish central. 

They were literally everywhere. Tons and tons of them.

A fun bit of trivia for you here. Did you know a group of starfish is called a tird?

Anyway, moving on. We crossed over this boulderous collection of, well, boulders. 

And continued down the beach thinking the trail would pick back up on the other side. I should note that crossing over said boulders was not exactly an easy task. One could easily hurt his or herself with one slight of the foot. 

Not taken or edited to black and white!

When we had walked a ways we determined the trail did not, in fact, pick up anywhere. The logical next move would have been to turn around and go back the way we came. But being logical doesn’t make for interesting stories now does it?
The guys had the grand idea to simply scale this mountainside to get back up to the trail. Please note in the picture below the guys in the bottom left, compared to the ridiculous mountain they thought we could just shimmy up.
Another note, remember when I said to take note of where we were in a picture near the beginning of our hike? That little spot is located to the left top of this picture. There was a small fence up there we were trying to make our way to.

Sarah and I ruled out scaling the mountain, but we reluctantly agree to try an alternate route that looked slightly less daunting, but did however, involve chest high ferns and deep pits between roots that you couldn’t see until you stepped in them. For all intents and purposes we were hiking through the dang jungle.
Sarah was really happy.

A few times husband announced he was sure the trail was just over the next landing. Trying to be good sports Sarah and I trudged on, only to get there and have both guys tell us it was just a little further up the hill. At one point we were met with a crumbling bank of mud and some strange rock that disintegrated to the touch. Eventually husband had to pull his rope out of his backpack to help everyone make it up.

And finally we broke through. I’ve never been so happy to find a trail in my life.

The pictures turned out blurry unfortunately. I guess low light and shaky hands are not the best combo. 

We were all covered in sweat and mud, exhausted, and laughing our heads off at what we had just done. The pictures still don’t do justice to what we hiked up, but the four of us will always know our accomplishment. 

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