Day 3 Port Orford/Bandon, Or KOA to Astoria, Or KOA
It was with great sadness that I left the remains of our webber barbecue behind today, at the local trash repository, Katherine even asked if I wanted to take a photograph of the event as something of such great memory had seen its last day, last tri-tip from Glick’s Meat market. We drove away without such a photograph as there is more to life than a simple steak roasting barbecue.
We made our way as quickly as possible over the 16 miles from the KOA to Bandon for our breakfast, finding a nice place in downtown Bandon for breakfast we had some pancakes with our own syrup and Boysenberry Jam, and some eggs.
Upon completion of our morning meal we decided that we would spend some time looking around the local shops, especially at an art gallery that had been suggested we see. There at the Second Street Art Gallery we spent some time looking around at the local art, much of it very good and fun to look at, until we decided that we could delay the days travel and events any longer and got on the road.
With full stomachs and and full fuel tank the travel was pretty light and fast for the majority of the trip, planning for and keeping in contact with a couple of friends that we were going to see too most of our attention as we headed North on Highway 101, until we passed a Light House and a couple of other locations near Yacht, Oregon that we decide that we would want to see on a future trip, locations of which we made quick notes.
Jarrod and Jessica were very welcoming when we arrived at their house and though we were only able to stay for a few minutes we were able to catch up with their news and play a little with their newly adopted child.
Making haste of the trip away from visiting with Jarrod and Jessica we speed on to Tillamook, in hopes that the visiting hours at the factory would not have yet been completed for the day so that we could have a look around the factory and facility as well as try some of their new cheeses and purchase some to bring home from our vacation. The gift area of Tillamook offers cheeses that Californians and even Oregon residents don’t have ready access to, a garlic pepper jack, garlic extra sharp and a smoked cheese all in their refrigerated cases ready to be picked to take home. It’s not hard to understand why it is that they don’t mass produce these cheeses as they are somewhat an acquired taste.
The evening travels ended with lots and lots of fog looking for someplace that we could collect some food for the morning journey as well as sustenance for ourselves before we retired for the evening. The Astoria, Oregon KOA was as welcoming as we had always remembered it and though we arrived late their general store was still open. Finding our spot quickly we set ourselves to warming up our long traveled, previously frozen lasagna, some bread, and a cup of milk before heading off to bed for the night.
Day 5: We stayed put at the Victoria West KOA
Wanting a day off before our return Katherine and I elected to stay put in the previous nights accommodations and tour around our newly embarked country. After a lazy morning playing Uno, cards, and browsing the internet a bit we made ready to head down to Victoria to see the Government buildings and take in some of the sights. A quick 22K from our campsite we were in Victoria and headed to the downtown area, our first obstacle was to find a place to park, and though I didn’t make quick work of it we were quickly parked alongside the government building setting off to see the sights.
First stop was almost a must, the Government building itself, we walked to the Harbor side of the building to get a clean shot of the Buildings face then up to the steps. At the steps we found that they offered a free tour of the building, an opportunity to walk through the corridors and get a lesson on the history of Victoria and British Columbia. Anyone planning on a visit to Vancouver Island, a visit to the Victoria government building is highly recommended and on the short list of things available to do that are free in the Vancouver area.
After having a look through the government building we set out to find some lunch, and some cash, though I could readily use our Visa I wanted to have some cash on hand to save the international charges encumbered on each charge. Not that it would really matter that much but lunch was amazing, I don’t even know how to describe it other than to say that it was a ‚ÄúWest Coast‚Äù sandwich with all the right tastes blended together including cranberries.
I had a tough time with the parking in the downtown area and quickly had to run off to check on the car twice to ensure that we didn’t end up with an international parking ticket. It was for that reason that we left Victoria on the second of such returns to head back to the KOA and find some food along the way. Though it was with frustration that I left Victoria for the fact that the government building is outlined by thousands of lights in the late evenings I had experience enough of the hustle to return to recharge the parking meter.
Day 4: Astoria, Or KOA to Victoria, Vancouver Island, B.C. KOA
The West Victoria, B.C. KOA is a place just off the highway, with only a few things to do. The weather would often bee cool if it weren’t for the heat wave covering almost the entirety of the
Our day started early in a rush to get on the road, with this being our only scheduled activity on the entire trip it was imperative that we be on the read without delay. We had in front of us a 4.5 hour drive at the end of which we were to get on a Ferry from Anacortes, Washington to Sydney, British Columbia, Canada. That was quite an undertaking as it was time imperative that we make our ferry to Sidney, BC so that we didn’t miss our reservations at the KOA. In typical Ford fashion we made it to the Ferry just in time to load and then leave.
This was the first time that Katherine and I would be outside of the United States since being married, and what a build up it was, looking forward to the cooler weather out on Vancouver Island. The ship took off quickly after our boarding with our Outlander, though I’m not sure how long the boat was actually docked in the first place for how quickly they are able to come and go from all of their ports.
Being the first time on a body of water directly connected to the Ocean, it was very fun to be out on the water, there was a since of excitement that couldn’t be broken. There were many things to photograph and many other photographers to talk to; we chatted about equipment and all of the many other things that a photographer can talk about. The boat moved quickly over the water to their first port destination, to take on additional passengers, it seems that a person is able to be picked up from any of the ports on the way to Sidney but not dropped off, that due to the fact perhaps that it is an international sailing. Stops along the way were Orca’s Island and another port that I forgot to grab the name of, every island along the way having it’s own charm.
During our sailing from the last port to Sidney we came across a Bald Eagle that had become water logged from it’s fishing and was attempting to swim it’s way to shore. The boats captain, wanting to be environmentally conscious I am sure, stopped the boat to attempt a rescue of the water logged eagle. During the launching of the rescue craft from the ferry the bird managed to swim very close to shore and by the time that the rescue craft got close enough to assist it landed itself on shore, there was a cheer from the people who had gathered on the rear deck to watch the attempted rescue. The rest of the sailing was spent watching the passing islands and looking at the wildlife accustom to the passing of the passenger ferry and other motor boats.
Upon landing in Sidney with the ferry Katherine and I were at the ready with our passports, hoping that we could get a stamp on them for entering Canada, they were not obliged to accommodate, and neither did I ask, though I guess that I should have. We were asked some basic questions about our intent upon entering Canada and with almost all the correct answers they allowed us onto the island to continue our adventure. One of the first things that we noticed was that the weather wasn’t as cool as we had expected, our extra set of shirts and shorts were going to come in handy as we dealt with the heat of Vancouver Island.
We spent little time looking around and headed directly to the KOA so that we would know where it was and figure out the rest of the evening after our tent was up, for the first time before sunset. Arriving at the KOA we were graciously greeted, our paperwork quickly filled out and our destination spot assigned. We quickly setup our camp sight and headed back into town to find some sustenance as Katherine and I had only had a snack style lunch during our voyage on the ferry. As a suggestion we quickly headed down the mountain to find a place called ‚ÄúThe Little Thai Place‚Äù not quite sure what to order we got what sounded good, the results of which were great, our salad more spicy than anticipated was very enjoyable and the entree full of a flavor all it’s own, we decided that we could come back here if time allowed.
Dinner complete we found some fixings for breakfast and headed back up the mountain to settle in for a good nights rest. The events of the long day and extraordinary amount of sun had sapped all of the energy out of us and we were ready for bed.