John Dellenback Dunes Trail (Oregon Coast) 30-Jul-2018

John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area

Smoke from all the wildfires burning in our region finally broke our resolve and we cashed in hotel coupons we’d been saving for a special occasion (like breathing) and headed for the Oregon Coast for a few (too few) days of cool and breathable air (plus seafood). We used Bonnie Henderson’s Day Hiking Oregon Coast (2nd Edition, 2015) as our guide and, for our second hike (her #67), picked an out-and-back hike to the beach on the John Dellenback Dunes Trail (USFS #1339) in the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area. We started from the John Dellenback Dunes Trailhead (whose entrance is separate from that of the nearby Eel Creek Campground), circled the campground to the north through a small patch of forest, then crossed two miles of dunes to the beach. There is no fixed “trail” across this stretch of sand; we just stayed near – and to the south of – the poles marking the general path. The last half-mile or so was through a dense tunnel of coastal vegetation and marsh (crossed by a wooden boardwalk) and then we popped out on the beach. Unlike yesterday, today the fog didn’t lift when we reached the beach. But the ocean breezes were cool and breathable and that was more than enough. After some deep breathes, we headed back, this time circling the campground to the south. This stretch of beach is also closed to motorized vehicles and has very limited road access, so the only person we saw was a ranger on patrol. A very nice, Beau Geste-style hike (5.7 miles round-trip; 500 feet of elevation) across the dunes. We then drove south to Coos Bay, had lunch at the 7 Devils Brewing Co., and afterwards spent part of the afternoon at Shore Acres State Park, the former estate of timber baron Louis J. Simpson. The state acquired the property in 1942 for use as a public park, but preserved Simpson’s extensive formal gardens. We wandered around enjoying the flowers, the views, and the clean ocean air.  We’re not sure how this day could have gotten any better…

John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
Starting out across Eel Creek
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
Eel Creek
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
Into the dunes
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
On the dunes
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
On the dunes
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
Dune grasses
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
Droplets on a blade
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
Staying to the south of the posts marking the route
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
Bush Monkeyflower growing in a damp defile in the dunes
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
A tunnel through the coastal brush
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
Through the coastal vegetation
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
On the beach (again)…
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
Beach with seabird
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
Crab as art
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
Time to head back
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
A long boardwalk crosses the marsh
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
A good walk in the sand
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
Our track to and from the beach
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
Water lilies in the gardens at Shore Acres
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
A flower in the gardens at Shore Acres
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
In the rose garden at Shore Acres
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
The LovedOne can’t remember the name of this flower
John Dellenback Dunes Trail Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area
A moth guards its flower

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