Sunday, September 14, 2014

9/14 Yachats and Yaquina Head Lighthouse

Actually, these two places are in opposite directions from South Beach State Park, but I had to get out today anyway and dump my tanks, so I figured it would be a good day to visit each of these.

Yachats is 24 miles south and was recommended by a friend of mine who used to live near here.  Instead of the flat, wide beaches I have been seeing, the beaches are rocky in this area, with birds and sea lions.

Sunday was probably not the best day to visit such a small town with limited parking for big vehicles, but I finally was able to find a spot and headed up towards the farm market.  I could not resist taking a photo of this yard!

This photo is looking back at the beach area, just north of the "downtown."

More rocks and logs, plus a lot of birds.

The Yaquina Head Lighthouse is just south of Newport and about 10 miles north of the state park.  It is on a long and high peninsula that juts out into the Pacific.  It is a national park, so free for us seniors.  There is a nice visitor center, as well, which is not pictured here.

There are tours of the lighthouse, but you have to pick up a free pass at the visitor center, which I did.  Only problem was the hoards of flies swarming around--lots of swatting but luckily they did not seem to be biting.   I really have seen very few flying insects around Oregon, so it was a surprise.

The lighthouse is the tallest in Oregon and was built in 1873.  Lens is a first-order Fresnel.

A first-order Fresnel lens is 6' in diameter.  There are some rare ones slightly larger, but even the biggest lighthouses in the U.S. such as the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse have only the first-order lens.  (The smallest are called "sixth order.")

I skipped the dump site on my way out this morning because of the long lines, but this is what I found when I got back at the state park at 4:00 p.m.   Lots of people checking in and blocking the entrance to the dump site.  The rangers were going down the line looking for people who already had reservations so they could expedite their check-in.  It took only about 5 minutes for the line to move so I could drive into the area where I could empty my tanks. I can go about four days without dumping my "grey" water, which is the water that results from dishwashing and showers.  I was at my limit, so it was worth the wait.  Ridiculous that this state park has only ONE sewer dump place for about 200 campsites! 

Almost all parks have a registration line and a bypass lane, so after dumping, I was able to zip past the line and park again in my spot.  Got a couple more days here before heading to my next spot in Bend, Oregon. 

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