Seaside wrap up

The excitement of Cannon Beach was obviously too much. Thoughts of activity slipped away to be replaced by thoughts of, well, nothing. Having said that the holiday culture need was satisfied by paying a visit to the Seaside museum. As with past walking tours and museum visits, a familiar pattern to the history of the town emerged.

Hardy pioneers, entrepreneurs, and fierce fires all stepped forward to take their bow. I may have to abstain from west coast culture for a while as its becoming a single story with highlights that can be swapped in and out of any of the towns or cities. The museum was actually full of informative exhibits. As Seaside is such a small place it was interesting to thumb through the old school photos. The growth of the town was very visible through the expanding grad class.

A lazy morning turned in to a slow lunch. A perfect holiday pace that continued in to the afternoon with another visit to bygone days, this time courtesy of a wander around the antiques and collectables mall. Maybe it’s an ageing thing. There’s just something comforting about unearthing artefacts from ones childhood. Simpler days. One great fund was an original Life Magazine from the actual day I was born. A must purchase if ever there was.

The day wound down with a slightly energetic walk along Seaside promenade. It’s a lot narrower than some of the marketing pics make it look, however it’s a good long walk. Combine the prom with a beach stroll and you have a great way to close off the day.

After a déjà vu final day it was time to head back north. The weather was turning and the Megler Bridge across the Columbia had an air of mystery about it as the far side was shrouded in mist. Once back in Washington, Dismal Nitch provided the perfect photo opportunity for an end of holiday snap.1308-Seaside-06

To spice up the drive home, lets face it, who wants to sit on I5 when there are alternatives, we decided to head across country to Bremerton and take the ferry to Seattle. Excellent choice.

The Puget Sound was a millpond, the sun was shining and the sights coming in to Seattle were sumptuous.

1308-Seaside-20So that was it. An Oregon coast break. As wonderful as living in the Lower Mainland is there’s something very special about walking mile long, almost deserted beaches. The beaches absolutely lived up to their reputation of being stunning. I’m certain that I’ll be beside the seaside again.

The two sides of Seaside

The receptionist at the hotel in Olympia seemed very underwhelmed when we mentioned that Seaside was the next destination. Her advice was to make sure we took in Cannon Beach. Later on it would become clear what her advice was based upon.

1308-Seaside-05After another roadworks littered drive, Seaside! Seaside has made its claim to fame as the end of the Lewis and Clark trail. It seems that the claim is stretching things slightly as the expedition stopped at Fort Clatsop and sent a working party to what is now Seaside to produce salt to preserve food for the journey back east. I’m not going to call out Seaside on a technicality.

First impressions? Accommodation excellent, beach amazing. Time to explore some more. The short walk in to town turned up a local cafe and what appeared to be a rather interesting antiques hall. More about that later. Walking back to the suite, the second side of Seaside surfaced.

The walk west along Broadway became a walk back in time. It was seaside in the more English style, compete with arcades. The only missing piece was the ‘Kiss me quick’ hat. So from the very European (Dutch/Belgian coast) beach to a very British seaside experience all within the space of a few hundred metres. I’m guessing that the hotel receptionist in Olympia has been exposed to ‘Kiss me quick’ Seaside and not the great beach. My preference is undoubtably the sandy Seaside, one of multi-mile beach, constant crashing of waves, rolling dunes and wide open space rather than the more manufactured Seaside. 1308-Seaside-02The pont is that there’s a choice. Although the town is small, the Pacific frontage is wide and deep enabling those that prefer their downtime to involve nothing more than nature to get exactly that. Want dodgems? No problem, Seaside can do that too.

Dinner was taken in the rather fine Pacific Way Cafe in the adjoining town of Gearhart. Well worth the short drive both for the food and taking in yet another stretch of super sandy, lightly populated beach.

The holiday was shaping up well in terms of offering mental downtime.

This was a great view to end the day.

 

Heading to Seaside

After much deliberation the Sunshine Coast was consigned to ‘another time’. BC Ferries were the sole reason for a vacation 180 degree. As much as the scootour would have been fun, combined ferry fares exceeding $300 were simply too high. BC loses out to south of the border. The Oregon coast called loud. Some swift research unearthed a very cool looking place in Seaside. I’d ridden through Seaside on my 2010 road trip so was familiar with the area. It’s reminiscent of the Belgian/Dutch cost and that’s not a bad thing. Pre holiday excitement kicked in.

A great idea from Lesley. How about staying somewhere Sunday night. Olympia was an obvious choice do me and having secured the rather pleasant Red Lion hotel at a great ‘Hotwire’ rate, everything was in place. Time to test the Nexus cards again.

The previous crossing went somewhat wrong as there was a ‘problem’ with my card. This time, easy. The card repaid the cost of enrollment as a one hour line up for the great un-nexused was a 30 second breeze across the border. The North American version of holidayng abroad had really started.

Despite very heavy traffic either side of Seattle, a combination of stalls, accidents and so many cars, the holiday mood prevailed. The overnight accommodation was perfect and a relaxed end of day meal closed out the Seaside trip, day one.