Dinner Any Time


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Lincoln City and Newport, OR

Time was up so I had to move on. Here’s where I mention one of my goofs. I planned out my stays several months in advance for Thousand Trails parks to cover all the summer holidays since unlike my other memberships, Thousand Trails lets me in to their parks during holidays rather than blocking out those dates. That alone makes my new membership very valuable. Unfortunately, I miscalculated how people handle the 4th of July holiday. Silly me. I thought people actually go home after the 4th. Nope. Some do go home while many others stay or come out just before to camp through the weekend after. I found myself still blocked out of some parks by my other memberships and others were booked full. It took a bit of scrambling but I did find a membership park with an opening. Now why is that important? Discount! Full-timers do not pay full price for campsites. Remember, for us this is the same as apartment rent or a mortgage. We live on the road and can’t afford those $30-$60 a night weekender prices. We have a budget like anyone else.

I headed down just south of Lincoln City to Chinook Bend RV Park. Nice clubhouse at the red barn. Right on the river with a boat launch and lots of dock space. Nice walking trail. Llamas. Not bad as parks go. Working from there was pretty difficult though. My Verizon phone and internet just barely worked and only then when sitting in the amplifier cradle. I had to go up to the clubhouse a couple days to work. The staff were very nice and even patched a trailer tire for me after I picked up a screw in it. I wondered why my trailer was shaking so much more than usual. It was because my tire was going flat! We all nearly had a really bad day when a Class A motorhome pulled out and forgot to put their flag down. With everyone yelling and honking horns at them, they stopped just inches from the main overhead power line. Eek! That was way too close.

Needed some groceries so I headed down to Newport for the day (they have a Wal-Mart). First, I stopped in at Yaquina Head Lighthouse along the way. They have a very good visitor’s center and interesting details about the quarrying of this area to build the coastal highway which had been in demand since cars first appeared. You can see the now closed quarry area. Inside the visitor’s center they have displays about the lighthouse and life there for the keepers and their families. I liked the excerpts from their log books. Interesting that their kids had to walk quite a way down Agate beach to school on their own. No one drove them. Their large library suitcase full of books to pass the lonely time out there was on display. They exchanged it every so often. There is a picture of one keeper fooling around to entertain the family by wearing his wife’s dress. You do what you can when bored. I should also mention that this is the first lighthouse museum I have been to that actually explained what the big deal is about having a Fresnel lens. They displayed the reason very well. It is to bend and point all the light into a straight path which allows it to be seen farther out.

Yaquina Head LighthousePortable LibraryFresnel Lens

The lighthouse can be toured if you can handle a whole lot of steps up. I chose to take pictures of it out on the deck instead and got pictures of the birds nesting on the rocks in the bay. This area is a favorite stop for them. It was icy cold out there that day with a stiff wind blowing. I decided to pass on touring the tidal pools. However, on the way out, I spotted something on the beach below and went to the overflow parking area for a better look. A couple there provided their binoculars to verify the scene. Down below is Agate beach and on the beach is the Japanese pier everyone has been talking about washing up there from the tsunami and are flocking to see. Yes! I got a chance to get a picture of it, maybe not a great picture, but one nonetheless without having to brave the traffic or make the long hike up the beach to it.

Birds roosting at Yaquina HeadYaquina Head tidepoolsTsunami pier

Now that my spirit was quite satisfied, I opted to satisfy the rest of me with a trip to Sizzlers there in Newport. I haven’t been in one since I left Blythe. As always, the food and service were excellent and plentiful. I love their salad bar and a little steak is good too. Besides, you’re not supposed to go shopping on an empty stomach. Good advice but they need to also add “or on a full stomach”. Nothing looks appealing in a grocery store when you are totally full.

Over to Wal-Mart I happily discovered they have come quite far with their renovation and can now be said to be a Wal-Mart Supercenter. The food is in and aisles of shelves are up. There don’t seem to be many Super Wal-Marts in Oregon so this is a big deal.

I ended up extending my stay by a day when I found out my oldest son was coming over to Newport with his family to camp at South Beach State Park. Had to stay for my grandkids. I met up with them at the state park and we went to tour the lighthouse again. While the youngest ran around and around below followed by Mom, the two oldest and Dad climbed the stairs up to the top of the lighthouse. As my son said, it is much farther to go when you have to get there going around in circles. LOL The grandkids still had plenty of energy so we took them down to Agate Beach to play in the surf and walk down to the Japanese pier. It’s a long walk. Our question is, if it is supposed to be Japanese, why is “no trespassing” painted all over it in English? Wink wink. BTW, nobody is paying any attention to that either. People are climbing all over it.

Japanese tsunami pier

For more pics click here.

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