Sunday, July 27, 2014

To the Oregon Coast

Our party split up on Monday morning: Mark and I headed out to go for a ride in the Willamette Valley while Hannah, Cary, Hazel and Nathan set out later for downtown Portland and then on to the coast. The plan was to meet in Lincoln City late that afternoon.

We rode on a bike path / trail that day that had been recommended on an Oregon cycling website. It was pretty ... but we were enveloped in towering trees most of the time, and that did get a little old after a while. Nevertheless, we got in about 43 miles. 

We have a goal of cycling 1000 miles in July. Mark will probably reach that goal before we head west again later this week to ride in the Marin County Century, but I'll need that 100 miles to reach my goal. Why are we doing this? Because we are headed to France in three (!) weeks for a three-week cycling trip. The first week will be spent on our own in the area of Bourg d'Oisans in the French Alps (see, e.g., here and here), then we will be joining a two-week organized cycling tour from Geneva to Nice. Thus the heavy training all summer. (There are a numbered of archived posts from September 2012 [see bottom right of blog page] about a similar trip we took that year.)

Wheat field in the Willamette Valley

Our destination that afternoon was the Ester Lee Hotel and Cottages, a place Mark and I had stumbled upon in September 2011. We were captivated by this quaint, "retro" place that is on a bluff overlooking the ocean. The beach is just a short walk down a (very steep) hill.

Mark standing in the doorway of our cottage in September 2011. I could never have imagined at that time that we would one day return with my son, my daughter, my son-in-law and my granddaughter.

One of our favorite pictures of us, taken by a couple of lesbians on the beach who were both from
- you guessed it - Utah (Salt Lake and Tooele as I recall)

When we arrived, Hannah, Cary, Hazel and Nathan were settled in their cottage "suite." It had a patio outside that we enjoyed sitting out on that evening. Mark and I got a room in the hotel next door because we had not been able to reserve a place big enough for all of us that night. (We would all move the next day into a bigger, nicer cottage.)

Old postcard showing the patio suites. The Stewart Suite was where the two blue lounge chair are in the foreground.

After getting settled in, Mark and Nathan enjoyed a walk along the beach with the dogs while Hannah and I sat and chatted on the patio outside their room. Below are some pictures that Nathan and Mark took while out for their walk. As is obvious from these photos, we continued to enjoy amazingly good weather while on the coast.

The view of the Esther Lee from the beach

Hannah and Hazel ready to watch the sunset

We had lasagna from Safeway in the Stewart Suite that evening, then sat outside to watch the sunset. It was glorious ...

and magical.

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