Saturday, June 1, 2013

Cape Disappointment Hike

After we had Ruby's solar panels installed in Springfield we headed towards the Oregon Coast.  It was after all Memorial Day weekend and we didn't feel like battling traffic on Interstate 5. We agreed that everyone along the coast would probably be coming southbound while we were headed northbound and thank goodness we were right !  It was a peaceful beautiful drive from Newport to Astoria.  Once we reached Astoria we turned off for Cape Disappointment-remember we fell in love with this park the last time we were here.

This time we decided to do a little more exploring.  We hadn't seen the Southern Lighthouse the last time we camped so we figured we would take the hiking trail and check it out. When we started out on the Cape Disappointment trail we both missed the little degree of difficulty symbol in the top right hand corner.  It's probably better that we did because we may not have taken it.  All the way up (and it's pretty much uphill the whole way) I kept noticing that the trail was hardly used.  The path was almost grown in and we only ran into one other hiking party coming down.  We just figured people weren't that interested in the Southern Lighthouse this time of year.  Oh boy, were we wrong.  It's not that people aren't interested-it's that there is a parking lot at the bottom of the path that leads up to the lighthouse !  It didn't matter,since we had Ruby we couldn't drive up to the parking lot anyway.  Plus the hike was gorgeous-through the deep green damp smelling woods; listening to different birds tweeting us along; flowers and berries all over; wind swept vistas once we reached the top-well worth it.  My Fitbit logged us at about 4.3 miles round trip and 64 floors -meaning that the inclines we made were the equivalent of climbing 64 floors-yikes !

These steps led up to a clearing overlooking the ocean and a windswept hillside.

Hailey needed a break once we got to the Interpretive Center and so did I !

I was excited when I saw the lighthouse-I figured just 1/2 mile to hike to it-what I didn't know is that it was 1/4 mile straight down and then 1/4 mile straight up ! But well worth it.

This is the only hill you have to climb if you drive to the parking lot close by instead of taking the trail.

A view of the Interpretative Center from the Lighthouse


And back down the trail we go.  We almost decided to head to the parking lot and walk back along the paved road, figuring it would be less challenging then the hike which was ahead of us.  But we thought it would be much more enjoyable to hike the trail-so we did !  The wind picked up and helped to keep us cool on the uphill climbs.  I was never so glad to see Ruby in the parking lot .  We each downed a bottle of cold water then popped open a cold beer-perfect way to end the hike !