Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Visiting Port Orford, Cape Blanco and a bike ride

Monday morning the skies cleared and we saw the sun. We decided to take a trip north of town to visit the most western spot in Oregon along with taking a bike ride.

We drove north along Highway 101 until we reach Port Orford where we stopped at the Visitor's Center located near Battle Rock. This is the site of one of the last battles between the Native Americans and the white settlers in Oregon. Most of the Native Americans were either killed or died by diseases introduced by the settlers for which they had no immunity. The remainder were relocated to reservations.

Battle Rock

From there we drove up to the Port Orford Heads State Park where a Coast Guard Lifeboat Station was built in 1934 and operated until it was destroyed by fire in 1970. There is still a couple of the houses used by the Coast Guard that house a museum. We hiked to both sides of the point located here and took a few pictures.

View from Port Orford Heads State Park

The was the launch site for the Coast Guard life boats. Destroyed by fire in 1970 only pilings remain.

One of the life boats used by the Coast Guard.

Coast Guard house now used by the museum.

We then traveled up to Cape Blanco State Park which is the most western point in Oregon. We first stopped at the Hughes House which was built in 1898 by a successful dairy farmer/rancher who owned about 2,000 acres in the area. The property was bought by the state in the 1970's to create a portion of the park. The ranch/dairy was run by descendants of the Hughes up until the sale to the state. The house has 7 bedrooms and is over 3,000 square feet under roof. It has a large kitchen and dining area that fed the family along with the ranch hands who worked the cattle.

The Hughes House

One of his sons was the first lighthouse keeper at the Cape Blanco Lighthouse.  Proposed in 1864, it was the first lighthouse in the state outfitted with a first-order Fresnel lens in 1870.The first-order lens was replaced with a second-order lens in 1936. About 15 years ago the lighthouse was restored and remains in good shape today.

Cape Blanco Lighthouse

View from Lighthouse

After finishing up at the lighthouse, we drove over to the Elk River Fish Hatchery where we had lunch. There is a county road that is paved for about 11 miles from the hatchery up the river with very little traffic. We rode our bikes up and back after lunch for a total ride of about 22 miles. We had a great afternoon with sunshine and warm temperatures.

They raise Chinook salmon and steelhead at this hatchery.

View from bridge over Elk River

View along Elk River Road. Connie now has 213 miles on her Rad Power bike.

After loading the bikes into the Jeep, we headed back to our campground for the evening after a full day.

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