The Scenes We Saw, Day Two


I’m sure if we give it a day or two, my mad writing skillz will return. However, after returning to work on top of the residual effects of “ZOMG exercise WTF??”, I’m still fuzzy. I’m reading a book on cadavers (Stiff by Mary Roach), which is appropriate because I rather feel like one. And I’m afraid that, as I looked at the first picture in today’s series, the most clever thing I could think of to say is,

“Watcha dune? Ha ha ha ha!

I really need to ramp up for these trips by performing a little exercise.

Anyway. Sightseeing. Right.

Dunes

I believe these are just north of Florence, but damned if I know for sure anymore. Hell, I got the southernmost coastal exposure of the CRB wrong yesterday – as Lockwood pointed out, it’s actually at Seal Rock. So, these are dunes. We actually saw these same dunes on a previous trip, but it was so overcast and hazy that they were kind of hard to see. This day was so nice you can even see the sand blowing off them.

The yellow flowering stuff is gorse. It looks pretty, but it is evil. Evil.

Dunes and Dead Tree

This stretch of Oregon coast is mostly dunes. Dunes dunes dunes dunes dunes. A huge long stretch of dunes, which you quite often can’t see from the road, because building major roads too close to active dunes is silly. But it’s lotsa dunes, and there are all sorts of little parks leading off to them, and at this one, we saw this lovely tree and a dune, and then when you get past the tree, on top of the dune, dere r moar dunes. It’s like what my grandparents thought Arizona would be: dunes. Only these aren’t barchan dunes, they are longitudinal dunes, also knows as seif dunes. I didn’t know they were also known as seif dunes until just now. You poor darlings, you’ll be bombarded with silly puns like “Seif al Dune,” because one of my favorite Epica songs is “Seif al Din” (YouTube). Anyway, we walked out on Seif al Dune, and it was a mind-warping experience that also included amazing examples of crossbedding, which I can’t wait to discuss with you but will have to because I need to read Michael Welland’s Sand first.

And if you want to see the craziness sand gets up to after it’s been turned to stone and then weathered awhile, just head on down the coast to Cape Arego. Da-yam.

Cape Arego

This is almost enough to make you forget how rugged basalt headlands look.

Cape Arego and Weird Tree

The sea’s claiming the headlands in the name of Poseidon. This is tough on the trees. This one was probably firmly and happily rooted once. Now it’s got its toes dangling over a void.

Tafoni Ride

I think it’s safe to call this “rude weathering.” Depending on your mentality, it can look like an upraised finger, or something else upraised, or a rocket, or a broomstick.

And speaking of rude, what the seabirds have done to this forest is incredibly rude:

Dead Tree Island

Lockwood tells me the forest up there was thriving before the birds moved in and shat all over it. Yes, those trees died of bird-poop poisoning. What a way to go.

Still, it looks artistic. And I like the seagull catching the sun as it flees the scene of a crime it didn’t commit – twas some other species whose name I can’t recall did the deed.

Sunset at Sunset

And this is how we ended the day, with sunset at Sunset Bay – well, nearly sunset: they chuck you out on your ear before the sun’s quite down. Wait until I show you the geology from that spot. Prepare for your mind to be boggled.

And dere are still two moar days. When Lockwood and I go out to see the geology of Oregon, we see as much of it as we can manage.

Comments

  1. says

    Yes, the first is just north of Florence, as we descended off Cape Perpetua and the Yachats basalt. 2nd was Eel Creek area, John Dellenback Dunes Trail. http://www.fs.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsinternet/!ut/p/c4/04_SB8K8xLLM9MSSzPy8xBz9CP0os3gDfxMDT8MwRydLA1cj72BTJw8jAwjQL8h2VAQAzHJMsQ!!/?ss=110612&ttype=recarea&recid=42605&actid=20&navtype=BROWSEBYSUBJECT&position=BROWSEBYSUBJECT&navid=110000000000000&pnavid=&cid=null&pname=Oregon+Dunes+National+Recreation+Area+-+John+Dellenback+Dunes+Trail+%231339
    3, 4 & 5 are at Shore Acres- Cape Arago is where we did a quick drive through, due to imminent low tide.

    Great photos, and at this point, as we suspected, I’m looking back and thinking “It wasn’t that bad.” I’m just stiff now, not in pain every time I try to move.

  2. says

    You think gorse is evil. I went hiking in Scotland only to discover that I’m allergic to this stuff I’ve never seen before that’s growing all over the place. So not only was my skin pricked all over, but all those tiny spots wanted to be welts. Bleah.

    I’m enjoying your pictures, though. :)

  3. Trebuchet says

    We did this trip about 10 years ago, looking at lighthouses. Did you see the one at Cape Arago? We didn’t. Fog. Can barely see your hand in front of your face type fog. It was a foggy trip in general but nothing like Cape Arago.

    • says

      Fog’s a frequent hazard on this coast, particularly once you get north of Los Angeles. On a trip down to Monterrey a couple of years ago, we saw only little bits of the coast in the rare clear spots in the fog bank that followed us most of the way down to Santa Barbara.

  4. F says

    I’ve felt embarrassed once or twice a week for over a year now that I’ve not yet read Sand.

  5. remysecor says

    Great pictures. I’ve downloaded a couple for my desktop background (W7). Hope you don’t mind, but they are truly wonderful.