oregon coast

After

seeing the three capes

the day before, we set out south in the morning on Highway 101. We stopped at all of our favorite places that Jennie's mom had never seen - Cape Foulweather (where we saw only

perfect

weather), Boiler Bay, Devil's Punch Bowl, Yaquina Head Lighthouse, Newport...even though the forecast was for overcast skies, we had sunny weather most of our trip down. We had delicious oysters in Newport, saw sea lions and seals and bald eagles, and drove back through pretty Willamette Valley wine country. A perfect end to our short coast trip!

three capes drive

The second day of our Oregon vacation, we drove out to see the ocean - through the sunny coast range and Tillamook with all its cows and came to the Three Capes Scenic Loop. We tried to do this drive a year ago, but the road was closed so we only saw one of the capes. This time, all three were open! The drive was gorgeous and freshly paved (except for a few huge potholes which Matt expertly avoided) - most of it was right along the coast, looking over small beachside towns. We stopped at Cape Meares and then Cape Lookout, which we instantly decided needs to be a future camping trip. The last one, Cape Kiwanda, was where we ended our day - with fish fresh from the ocean, beer brewed on the spot, and sand beneath our feet!

hello, 2013!

Happy new year, everyone! It's been a while since we've sat down to write at ye olde blog - the holiday rush was more of a rush than we were expecting, to say the least. Now that everything has calmed down a bit, we can get back to posting (and eating regular meals!).

To celebrate the new year, we took a trip out to the coast, to Seaside. We've visited Seaside a few times before and stayed there in July when Jennie's mom and sister were visiting - this time, we stayed at the north end of the beach-long promenade. We were within a few blocks of lots of restaurants and shops - we didn't get in our car once in the three days we were there! It was really nice.

Compared to our trip to the coast

last year

, it was so much warmer! Our hands nearly froze off last year when we forgot to bring gloves, but this year we strolled on the beach in the mornings and didn't even have to zip up our coats!

Now that we've had a bit of a recharge, we're ready for the new year - our second official year of being Seaborn Press - and we have lots of new things on the way! New wedding designs, stationery, the reopening of our non-letterpress shop, and lots more gardening, hiking and general regular life stuff. Here's to 2013!

yaquina head lighthouse

When we went to the coast two weeks ago with my dad and stepmom, we stopped at one of the oldest lighthouses on the Oregon Coast - Yaquina Head Lighthouse. It was built in the 1880s and is the tallest lighthouse in Oregon!

The area around the lighthouse reminded us of New England - an extremely rocky coastline and barren grassy peninsula. It's really impressive that people used to live out here with very few connections to other humans - they even had a garden, when average temperatures are probably never much over 70ΒΊ!

The seaside cliffs off of Yaquina Head are full of all kinds of seabirds - luckily, Ruth brought binoculars! We saw all kinds of birds that we'd never seen before. There were also harbor seals relaxing on the rocks below. They're like sea lions, but smaller and very clumsy on land.

We also saw a whale! Just offshore is a reef that stretches to the south - gray whales like to feed around the reefs and we saw one bobbing around just past those cliffs. I even saw its tail as it dove back underwater.

I got a lighthouse pin to commemorate the visit! It's a replica of a pin that lighthouse keepers used to wear on their hats. I'd love to visit the lighthouse during one of the big whale migrations (December and April) - from up high, you'd be able to see lots and lots of whales.

a day at sea

During my dad and step-mom's recent visit, Matt and I did something we'd both never done before - gone on a boat in the ocean! Billed as a "marine discovery tour", we went to sea hoping to spot some resident gray whales off the coast of Newport, Oregon. We'd actually seen a few whales from shore, the day before - much closer than we saw

last winter

when they were migrating down south.

We set off from the harbor, which was bright and sunny - as we passed under Newport's Yaquina Bay Bridge, all that changed. All week, as we travelled up and down the coast, we'd pass from a pocket of fog to bright sunshine and back within a mile. Apparently this kind of fog is totally normal at this time of year.

Once we passed the bay bridge, everything was grey. The ocean and sky were almost the same color, which made it feel as though we were on a very small expanse of water instead of the largest one on the planet. There were a few good-sized swells (10 feet), but everything felt so serene.

You probably won't be surprised to hear that we didn't spot any whales. Luckily, our ex-Bering-Sea-fisherman captain was prepared for those kind of circumstances and took us on a nice trip around Yaquina Bay and up the Yaquina River for a bit.

As you can see, it was much sunnier when we went inland - I saw my first bald eagle ever! There were also a bunch of cute harbor seals lounging on an old oyster pier. In the end, not seeing whales wasn't disappointing at all - the nice ocean ride itself was completely worth it.