Sunday, October 2, 2011

Bullard's Beach and Bandon

Oregon State Parks are really, really nice. Bullard's Beach is just north of Bandon. It's pretty big but individual campsites are secluded and protected from the wind. There's a great trail across the dunes to the beach and a bike path that follows the road. Many birds make their homes in the woods between the campsites. And my neighbors were all super friendly.

But the thing that made Bullard's Beach perfect was meeting friends for a 'get together'! That's Laura and Harley on the left; Marda and Monty in the middle; and Karen and Blossom on the right.

Bullard's Beach is on the north side of the Coquille River. Bandon on the south. The Coquille River Light house sits at the north jetty about a mile from the campground. It was built in 1896 and in use until 1936. Many people come to this area to fish in the river. I had intended to kayak, but way too windy that week.

The south jetty has a fog horn that seemed like it *might* be the tsunami warning the first time I heard it! That's Bullard's Beach in the far reaches of the next shot. It's several miles long and I walked most of it over the course of the week I was there.

Between Coos Bay to the north and Flora Lake to the south (a total of maybe 30 miles) there are at least 12 state, county, city, federal parks. Not to mention the many scenic overlooks with interpretive signs AND access to the beaches. Face Rock was fascinating. The source of many local legends.

Quintessential Oregon coast.

The Bandon Museum is terrific. They have great exhibits of the local history. Including a quilt with the names of my cousins from Oakdale. That is a bit of a mystery to be solved! Virtually the whole downtown and waterfront of Bandon burned in 1936. It's worth a stop at the museum for that story alone. And now the waterfront has been restored yet again. It's really beautiful with sculptures, benches, art displays. And if it's too windy to walk on the beach, just go back to the wharf and have a shrimp cocktail at Tony's Crab Shack. (Which is what I did several times!).

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