Monday, June 4, 2012


Sunday, June 3 – This is a flashback to the day we visited the Umpqua Lighthouse.

After our lighthouse tour, we drove about a mile down the coast to the Oregon Sand Dunes National Recreation Area. This area runs from the shores of North Bend, OR, through Winchester Bay and ends in Florence, OR. We visited the Dunes in Winchester Bay.

Oregon Dunes

It consists of over 40 miles of undisturbed beaches and the tallest dunes in the nation. These piles of sand towering to 500 feet above sea level provide numerous recreational opportunities including off-road vehicles, hiking, sand sledding, horseback riding and camping.

Formed by the natural forces of wind, water and time, these dunes are like no other in the world. The desert-like landscape blends with lakes, rivers, ocean and forest, creating a diverse ecosystem filled with plants and animals.

more dunes

Thousands of off-road vehicle riders come to enjoy the thrill of riding across these tracks of sand. Whether by sand rail, motorcycle, 4X4 , quad, or guided trip, riders are in for a treat. Being a weekday, there were only a few off-road vehicles out today and we did not see any in the dunes.

walking on the dunes

Many areas are designated for quiet activity. You can walk over 40 miles of undisturbed beach. Many trails wind through Douglas Fir and Sitka Spruce. Some go up and over through sand dunes. We hiked a short way up a couple of the dunes, and we'll tell you, hiking in these dunes would be a heck of a workout.


We then ventured to the Umpqua Aquaculture Oyster farm.

Umpqua Aquaculture

These oysters are raised in nets suspended above the ocean floor in a triangular area formed by the two southern jetties at Winchester Bay, Oregon .

Those black barrels have the nets attached to them.oyster nets

The nets are above the sand, resulting in no gritty taste. We found them sweeter than the oysters we've tasted in the past.

You can see the workers shucking the oysters from a viewing area off the sales floor. There were only 3 workers removing the oysters from the netting, forcing open the shells, sorting and bagging them for sale or shipping.

shucking oysters

Using an air hammer to break the oysters free from the net.DSC05212

We purchased a cup of about a dozen oysters in cocktail sauce for tasting ($5).

They were huge.

Paul is not into eating raw seafood, so after tasting about three oysters, he allowed Marsha to enjoy the remaining oyster cocktail.  All in fun…they really aren't that bad – but they don't taste like chicken!  It's just the "raw thing" he doesn't like.


We stopped at Reedsport, at the Dean Creek Elk Viewing Area, and were delighted to see a herd of Roosevelt Elk grazing in the lush green grass. It appears they were all male elk, if having horns is any indication. What a neat experience to see these creatures in the wild.

Roosevelt Elks

Roosevelt Elks 2

On our way back to the campground, we stopped at the famous Mo's Restaurant, in downtown Florence, to compare the Clam Chowder to our previous tastes at Brookings Harris Beach, and at ICM (International C-Food Market) here in Florence. There is not a clear winner in the Weaver Taste Contest after three tasting experiences. More to come in the future!


ICM were we had lunch.

Thanks for stopping by. Hope to see y'all back real soon. Have a great day!


  1. Funny! I love oysters and clams and could live on them if I weren't allergic. Drats!

  2. They make such a fuss about Mo' s chowder. We didn't think it was all that! Loved revisiting the area thru your blog today. We were there last year and just loved it.

  3. I think I know who will win but you haven't been there yet ;))

  4. So, I'd like to know who Toni thinks will win the chowder contest. I call Mo's chowder bacon chowder instead of clam chowder. It tastes like bacon and not like clams so it's close to the bottom of my list. Isn't it grand we all like different things. However, I do agree with Paul ... cook my seafood.

    We've never been to Winchester Bay. It is on our list for this fall as we head south though. Thanks for the photos here.

  5. Come on know what they say about

  6. I am so glad Jim didn't find out about that oyster place. He loves those things and I can't watch him eat them. Yuck.

  7. I would be making the same face as Paul did if someone tried to make me eat raw oysters.

  8. i prefer my oysters lightly fried and on a Po Boy roll... but a few raw ones every now and then won't hurt anybody...

  9. Flashbacks are good, especially if they don't include RAIN! I I'd known you loved oysters so much we could have arranged for a whole case for you, I'm sure. Maybe you should try them fried next time, Paul.

  10. I can guarantee you that NO RAW oyster will ever touch my lips!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Love the sand dunes...

  11. The oyster farm was so interesting...and Paul's face a hoot! He's braver than I would be about eating raw oysters. Do you chew them or swallow them whole...and if you swallow them whole, what's the point? The dunes were beautiful! Wondering if Mt. St. Helens is on your radar.

  12. Paul was a trooper; that's three more than I would have eaten :-))) I'm just not into raw either.

  13. Something about the word raw don't go with any kind of meat even sea food? I like the word fried .!Darren( The Berry's RV TRAVELS ).

  14. Nah...I'm with Paul. I can't stand raw oysters. Too slimy. Tried them once many years ago by adding hot sauce, then "slurping" it followed by a cracker and chasing it with a cold beer. That didn't even work. Now clam chowder---love it. The best I've ever eaten was at Dan's Clam Stand in Crystal River and Homosassa, Florida.

  15. Love the town of Florence. Astoria is my favorite, 2nd is Newport. I share Paul's feelings about raw oysters.

    Enjoying your blog. I can never read enough about Oregon.

  16. I love Paul's facial expression! I have learned to eat Oysters Rockefeller. It took a while. We can hardly wait to take off for Oregon.

  17. to me raw and oysters just don't go together..ewww...another great post of your adventures at the best place on earth!

  18. Gotta go with Paul on this one. I ate a raw oyster...once...that was once too often!


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