Yesterday was a long day. A very tiring day actually. After getting up so early I felt tired to start with. But we has a great breakfast at the Shelburne Inn. Part of the deal when you stay at China Beach is breakfast at the Shelburne. It’s served in the lobby which is filled with antiques and all the guest show up around 8:30 and are seated at several large tables. It’s a fairly limited menu but really good food – David does all the cooking and the service is excellent. A lot different from the Quinault! Nice people at our table and David, ever the social person making the rounds to talk to everyone. He gave us a couple of his poems (which I haven’t had a chance to read) and an article he wrote about his Dad who died last year but was a wonderful watercolorist. His paintings are down in China Beach.
My plan was to find and take photos of the murals that are painted on some of the buildings on the Peninsula so we took a drive all the way to Oysterville (guess what the main industry is) which is at the northern end of the peninsula, about 11 miles. Huge piles of oyster shells being scavenged by the sea gulls! Oysterville is a really quaint old village which is on the Register of Historical Places. The peninsula is really flat and in places a bit marshy with sloughs running through it. Some of the residential areas look really nice and then the others look like trailer trash. There are some big, new houses being built on the beach but you had better like living in a constant wind. The big sport down there is kite flying – gives a bit of an indication of the weather, plus it rains about 100 inches a year. But overall it is an interesting area.
On the way south back towards Long Beach we found several of the murals, really cool looking though some are quite faded. We went all the way back to Ilwaco to find others and ended up wandering around the waterfront for a while, chatting with an artist called Don Nesbitt who actually makes his living selling his art. The area is very much a fishing port, with canneries and fish processing plants, actually crab processing. Lots of fishing boats, the ones I saw heading out early in the morning.
It was the Lewis and Clark Bi-Centennial last year and Cape Disappointment, just up the hill from Ilwaco, was the expeditions ending point and there is a wonderful museum, or Interpretive Center near the lighthouse. We spent a couple of hours up there – it would be a great place to take kids as there are lots of hands on exhibits where you can try things and touch and feel the stuff. Really a cool place.
By the time we were done, it was really too late to get to Lucky Mud Inn which I was supposed to visit so called ahead to tell them tomorrow. I don’t think she was too thrilled but oh well… We weren’t staying there so its not serious.
In fact we didn’t have anywhere to stay and figured we’d find somewhere in the direction of Lucky Mud but as we drove along the Columbia River it didn’t appear that there were many motels or hotels. The river is huge – I didn’t remember it being this wide and the road hugs the banks. There wasn’t much traffic as there has been a huge landslide about 50 miles further on that is blocking through traffic.
Finally, we came to a town – well, settlement – and found the Sleepy Hollow Motel. An old probably 70’s place run, and probably owned by an old lady called Rosie. Talk about basic, but clean. And down the road is the Hunter’s Inn and Tavern so after checking in we went down for something to eat. I had surprisingly good fish and chips and Chris had what he said was one of the best hamburgers he’s ever had. It was enormous, I have no idea how he ate it all!
Then it was back to the room and a little TV and sleep. The bed was like a trampoline and every time Chris moved (he is a very restless sleeper) I felt like I was in an earthquake and so slept very little again.
From the sound of the traffic on the road out there, it might be raining so I think our fine weather is over. Rats!