We just finished a two week stay in Astoria, Oregon and it was quite nice. No wine tasting on this leg of our travels, but we did experience a lot of what Astoria has to offer.
Lewis & Clark Golf & RV Park
The Lewis & Clark Golf & RV Park we stayed in was small, but nice. The first week, we were parked in an interior spot, but we were able to move to an exterior site for the second week. There, we backed up to the golf course and had a nice open area behind the RV to sit and enjoy the beautiful weather. We felt bad for our Texas friends enduring the hundred degree temperatures! There was a huge grassy area for Enzo to run around in – unfortunately, he injured his dew claw and we ended up taking him to Bayshore Animal Hospital. He received excellent care there, and he was on the mend within a couple of days.
Facts about Astoria:
- It is located on the Columbia River, close to where it leads out to the Pacific Ocean.
- Lewis & Clark National Park and Fort Clatsop – where the explorers stayed at the end of their trek across the country.
- It has long been a logging and fishing town, but that part of their economy has slowed down over time.
- Some call it “little San Francisco” because of the Victorian architecture, steep hills, and eclectic community.
- Several movies have been filmed there: “The Goonies”, “Short Circuit”, “Kindergarten Cop”, and “Free Willy”, to name a few.
We crossed the bridge into Washington and spent some time in Cape Disappointment State Park. A short, moderate hike took us to the light house that is located near the Coast Guard station. There were incredible views of the water and the surrounding landscape, but it wasn’t long before the fog rolled in and we couldn’t see what was on the other side of the cliff.
The Astoria Column
We visited the Astoria Column, which is basically a slim, concrete tower that has an observation deck at the top overlooking the town, the river, and the surrounding area. I’m pretty afraid of heights, so I think it was quite brave of me to agree to climb to the top of the 164-step, spiral staircase. Granted, once I got up there I walked out onto the observation deck (which is very narrow, by the way), never let go of the door jamb, looked out, then turned around and went back down! I’m still proud of myself, though.
Lewis & Clark National Park
We took the opportunity to renew our park pass when we visited Lewis & Clark National Park. It costs $80 and has been well worth it for us as we have visited several national parks over the last year, and it has definitely paid for itself. We looked around Fort Clatsop, then did some hiking along the trails in the park. As we were crossing the street to take another trail route, I noticed a small sign that said “Steep Trail”. They weren’t kidding! It seemed like it was up hill both out and back.
Fort Stevens State Park
Fort Stevens served for 84 years, beginning with the Civil War and closing at the end of World War II. It’s a fairly large park that still has gun batteries to explore, plus camping, hiking and biking trails, and a beach. We took the bikes out on the paved trail and it was a nice ride.
The Columbia River Maritime Museum houses lots of artifacts pertaining to shipwrecks, lighthouses, fishing, and naval history. We learned about the Columbia River Bar, which is where the river meets the ocean. The current (“focused like a fire hose”) and waves are so severe that vessels use bar pilots to help guide them across.
We rode our bikes on the Riverwalk, which goes along the waterfront for about three miles. There is a trolley that takes part of the same path – both go by a few of the local shops and restaurants, the Maritime Museum, and, of course, follow the Columbia River.
There were several breweries in town – we visited four of them. Fort George Brewery and Public House, Astoria Brewing, Buoy Beer, and Reach Break Brewery. All of them had good food and good beer. We both give Astoria Brewing the highest marks for beer. Jim thought the chowder was best at Buoy Beer. Reach Break doesn’t have its own kitchen, but there were three food trucks to choose from and a nice sized patio with picnic tables and umbrellas. If you aren’t a beer drinker, Reveille Ciderworks is right next door.
Jim finally got in a round of golf on the last day we were there. The course is nothing fancy, but I enjoyed driving the cart while he played. And we drank Lynmar Rosé from our Yeti mugs!