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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Honeymoon Road Trip Part 2 (Days 5-9)

Day 5 (Friday, November 2):

We headed out bright and early from Baker City towards Bellingham, WA to visit Zeke's extended family. We ran into some road construction along the way... and some traffic... and some more construction...

We also got a chance to visit Zeke's cousin. I hadn't met this cousin formally yet- he wasn't able to make it out to our wedding, and he only popped in briefly the first time I was in Washington. We stopped by a field where he was working. His company does custom grape harvesting, something my Midwestern self had never even thought about.  At this particular field, the grapes being harvested were for wine. We got to taste a couple of grapes; they were so small but so sweet! It was really interesting to see the machines and the vineyard (who knew grapes had to be harvested? And who knew there are tractors that tiny?), and he works in some beautiful places.

We ran into some traffic around the Seattle area, so we got to Zeke's aunt's house a little later than we planned. We got to visit with his aunt for a while, planned out the activities of the next day, and then had a good night’s sleep.
Day 6 (Saturday, November 3):
We spent most of the day visiting with relatives- first with Zeke's Beppe (Grandma in Dutch) at her new condo, and then at another of Zeke's cousin's homes. Several other relatives also came by for lunch, so we got to see most of the family.
We left around 2:30 in the afternoon, and fought some more Seattle traffic on the way south. We got to see the Space Needle, though!  We stopped for the evening outside Seattle in a town called Tumwater.

Blurry Space Needle

Day 7 (Sunday, November 4):
Zeke and I were very happy that our new rental car has Sirius radio- we were able to listen to our Sunday sermon in the car, and found it no problem. We got a pretty early start out of Tumwater. Zeke's aunt suggested that we stop in Florence, OR to take a dune buggy ride, but the tours were all closed for the season. That didn’t stop us from looking around a little at the dunes!

I'd never seen dunes like this- I'd been to dunes in Wisconsin, but most of the greenery around those dunes were grasses. It was cool to see pine trees surrounded by sand.

As we got closer to the ocean, it got a little foggy, but we still saw some great scenery. 

We stopped at a marina with a great view in Port Orland, Oregon, and stumbled upon a community celebration with fresh fried fish.The people were so friendly. We got to hear a little about the fish refuge in the port, and got free hot dogs and beer!

The friendly (and very laid-back) fishermen at the celebration suggested a campground nearby, called Humbug Mountain State Park. It was such a cool campground. The bathrooms were beautiful (and so clean), and it was like camping in a rainforest. The humidity was incredible, and we could hear the ocean from our site. The trees were covered with thick moss, and there were a ton of hiking paths and biking paths around the campground.

Humbug Mountain Campsite

View from inside the tent- Humbug Mountain, OR

Mossy trees!
We had a great night- ate some food cooked over the fire, and enjoyed the beautiful weather before hitting the hay.
Day 8 (Monday, November 5):

 We got a later start in the morning, and the day was already underway by the time we made breakfast, cleaned up, and tore down camp. We drove along the coast, seeing some beautiful ocean views. It was about 75 degrees or so, and we got out to stretch our legs and play in the sand.

In the Pacific Ocean- Oregon Coast

When we started back out again, we drove into the redwood forests. The trees were amazing- like walls around the road. 

The road we were on took us from redwoods to ocean and back. It was really neat to see two completely different types of scenery so close to one another. 

We stopped at the "Trees of Mystery," a little tourist spot boasting some cool redwood trees and a SkyTrail up through them. Zeke also got to meet Paul Bunyan...

... and there were some slight similarities...
The Trees of Mystery were pretty cool- here are some of the highlights-
Cathedral Tree- Nine trees growing out of one base in kind of a semi-circle. Lots of weddings take place here every year. 

 Nature's Underpass- Just a hole in the roots that I had to crawl through!

 The whole atmosphere felt a little like something out of a movie.

After hiking around for a while, we took the SkyTrail. I was much less comfortable with being up so high than Zeke was (which isn't very surprising,) but it was a really cool experience. 
 The viewpoints were really beautiful, too.

After we left the "Trees of Mystery," we had another cool experience- driving through a redwood!

We found a cute little resort to stay at for the evening just on the border of California to rest after such a busy day!

Day 9 (Tuesday, November 6):

 We were able to get an early start, what with not needing to pack up the tent and everything. We started back through the redwood forests and along the coast.

 We came across a bunch of elk (who would have thought there were elk in California?)

We drove along Highway 1, which was super curvy and took us from forest to ocean. It was a beautiful trip, but slow going because of all the sharp turns and steep curves.

We finally got to Monterrey around 8, quite a bit later than we had anticipated. I think it was worth it for the beautiful drive, though! We met up with Zeke's friend B and had some great food, and then stayed with him at his home in Marina. 

Click here for Days 10-13!

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