I found that around the 6-week mark, I began to feel a little road-weary. Oversaturated with new experiences and sounds, I was ready for a break from my vacation. I know this sounds crazy, but anyone who’s been on the move for months at a time can understand the desire for familiarity that creeps into your mind after encountering the unknown day after day. Comforted as I was by numerous bowls of fresh seafood chowders (especially a bowl of smoked salmon chowder), I was eager to get up the coast to Port Angeles, WA and Vancouver, BC to see some familiar faces. 

Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area was the highlight of this leg of the journey. Walking through sand dunes on the coast of Oregon had me wondering if I really was in the Pacific Northwest. Never have I gotten lost so quickly. Wind and water obscured the trail almost immediately once I entered into the dunes. A few signs marking the trail were all I had to go by, as any footprints had disappeared.

Flooded in several spots, I waded through cold water in bare feet until the depth surpassed my knees and my cold feet refused to go any further. Turning back I wandered through the sand. It wasn’t long until I saw bear tracks along the path I was walking on. Out of my element, I looped back to my car, parked in the forest, inland above the dunes. Without the coastline to guide me North, I may have lost my way along the coast of Oregon. 

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