|Welcome to Old Town Bandon|
|Coquille River Lighthouse|
|Seahorse Guarding the Bandon Harbor|
|Distinctive Sidewalk Pattern|
Although we spend very little time shopping, we do make exceptions for specialty foods. Today’s stop was at Cranberry Sweets, a shop that specializes in every possible type of candy or confection made with cranberries, plus a few other fruits. It turns out that cranberries are grown just south of Bandon. Cranberry Sweets is known for its free samples, and we ate our way through the aisles. Cranberry fudge and chocolate-covered cranberry granola were just two of the items that ended up in our bag. We just couldn’t bring ourselves to buy the cheddar cheese fudge, a local specialty. We did sample it, however, and it actually wasn’t bad.
|I Want One of Those, and Those . . .|
Cranberry Sweets just whetted our appetite for lunch. The Bandon Fish Market on the docks seemed to be just what we were looking for since we were craving seafood once again. I ordered the jumbo prawns while Tim selected the Dungeness crab cocktail. Both were so fresh and delicious.
|Fish Swimming to the Bandon Fish Market|
|Crab and Prawns|
After filling our stomachs, we took advantage of the beautiful weather, which lasted much of the day, and detoured onto back roads to the beach at Seven Devils State Recreation Area and then to the pretty fishing village of Charleston.
|Seven Devils State Recreation Area|
|What Are Those Pretty Yellow Bushes?|
The character of the coast changed dramatically as we crossed Coos Bay, and we got our first view of the towering sand dunes of the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area. The dunes extend for approximately forty miles and some are several hundred feet in height. Mostly the dunes are covered with forests and are hidden from view. On the east side of the highway we admired a string of very pretty lakes.
|The Oregon Dunes|
Although we didn’t stop to play in the dunes, we did pay a visit to the Umpqua Lighthouse, which is located at the mouth of the Umpqua River at Winchester Bay. The lighthouse was illuminated for the first time in 1894 and is still in operation today. It’s just one of several historic lighthouses that we’ll see along our way.
|Salmon Harbor Marina at Winchester Bay|
I have been very impressed by the incredible number of state parks along the Oregon coast. Like California, the state of Oregon provides all types of opportunities for access to its coastal resources. What a contrast to so many of the states along the east coast. The state is even creating new parks at the same time other states are closing their parks.