Thursday, March 14, 2013

Final Oregon Post

Our fifth day of the trip was our day to drive to the coast. This was the first time we had rented our car for the whole trip. We felt pretty accomplished that we were able to get everywhere we wanted to go using public transportation.
Our first stop was Cannon Beach. It was yet another rainy day so the beach was very cold and windy but we still loved it. In these pictures is Haystack rock which, if we heard correctly, is in the movie Goonies! Love that show. Tyler got brave and walked through all those rocks and waves to Haystack rock. I had to borrow Tyler's shoes to wear at the beach so I wasn't risking falling in the water!

We continued our long drive down the coast toward Tillamook. These are some of the pictures that I got along the way. It was gorgeous!
We stopped for some pizza in Tillamook and it was ginormous! That mountainous half is the taco pizza. It was interesting... :)

If anyone recognizes the name Tillamook, then you probably know of their cheese. Driving past the Tillamook Cheese Factory, we decided that we should stop in and check it out. Plus we knew we would get free samples. Can't pass up on that! It actually was really interesting seeing how they make the cheese and package it and store it. I tried every sample, even the squeaky cheese, which was a bit unnerving for me. We also got their super yummy ice cream and ice cream soda!
Tyler had booked our hotel for our coastal stay in Depoe Bay. I was so excited to stay there, it was a cute little inn whose inn keepers were a nice old married couple that made breakfast for us in the morning. I would definitely stay there again. Unfortunately I didn't get any pictures of it, bummer. We checked in at about 6:00 and the whole town was so quiet, especially our hotel, we felt like we had to whisper. Such a sleepy little place. 

The next day we were off to the coastal aquarium. That Japanese Spider crab you see below is a baby! The picture with Tyler in it is how big that crab is going to get! Eek!

The Shark tunnel was way sweet. They even had glass on the floors, so you really were surrounded by sharks. This made me want to get scuba certified so bad!

On our way to the aquarium we had seen a lighthouse, so after we were done we headed back to see if we could find our way there. Once we got there, it was awesome. They were cleaning the lighthouse at the time so we weren't able to go in it, but it was still fun to walk around outside of it. 
As I was looking around I heard some people oohing and ahhing so of course I had to see what they were looking at. Over the ledge were tons of seals! They are kind of hard to see in this picture, but they are just lounging on the rocks, catching some sun. There was a baby seal that just went off on its own into the water and I was so concerned because where in the world was it's mother?!?!?! I stayed there waiting for it to come back for like 10 minutes and it never did. Hopefully it's ok!

Also below the lighthouse were some tide pools. This was way more exciting than the aquarium just because how cool is it to find starfish in their natural habitat?

Probably the highlight of the whole trip for me was turning around and suddenly seeing this crazy octopus stalking some fish. Seriously the coolest thing I have ever seen! I was freaking out! He was moving pretty fast and I had to snap a quick picture before he went under that rock there. There was a man who was in charge of the tide pools and we told him that we saw an octopus and he said we were way lucky because he rarely ever comes out.

After the lighthouse we started heading back to the hotel, looking for some caves along the way. Well we found some! So then we, of course, had to find a way to get down to them. I wish I had taken a picture of the crazy climb I took to get down to these caves. Seriously, there was a rope tied to the tree and everything to help you get down. Oh the things I do for my husband ;) Once we got down, the trek was worth it. The caves were awesome and we got to watch a pretty sweet sunset from our spot too.

There was restaurant right above the caves that we found, so we decided to eat there. It looked like a complete hole in the wall, but once we got inside we loved it! This picture isn't very good but at least it shows the cool view that we had of the ocean, sunset, and the caves we went to.

Oregon Trip Continued

Day 3 of the trip we hopped on the bus and headed to a bike rental place (or so we thought). We picked this particular rental place because it was closest to Forest Park, which is just out of the downtown area. Well we showed up and they said they don't rent bikes anymore! Darn it, that's what we get for not planning in advance. We had hoped to ride their mountain bikes through Forest Park so we just hiked instead.
Forest Park is a ginormous park! We probably only saw about 1/8th of it with our hike. There are millions of hiking, biking, and running trails throughout it and it is incredibly gorgeous! You feel like you are in a rain forest, the trees are just covered in moss and everything is green.

We were hiking along this creek for awhile and all of a sudden came across...

this random building (also covered in moss). It was was so cool!

As we were doing our hike through the forest, Ty was telling me about this other hike that he wanted to do that took you up to Pittock Mansion which had a great overlook of downtown Portland. I thought it sounded sweet so we were going to do it after we were done at Forest Park, but as we got to the top we ended up running into Pittock Mansion! We had been hiking that trail the whole time. Killed two birds with one stone (and I didn't mind not having to do another hike that day :) ).

It was a BEAUTIFUL mansion and, not to mention, I tried some yummy pepper jelly there.
After our lovely hike, we got back on the bus and decided to do a little more shopping. Luckily Tyler loves shopping just as me, especially when he finds Patagonia, Columbia, and Mountain Hardware all within a block of each other. Tyler heaven!

The next day we woke up to some rain! Finally, the Oregon weather we were expecting. We had wanted to go to the zoo and the Japanese Gardens that day and I am so glad we did not let the rain stop us. But, first things first, we had to hit up the famous Voodoo Doughnuts.

I had read about this place online, but I did not expect it to be so GOOD! They had millions of flavors of doughnuts and I wanted to try all of them. I limited myself to get two and that was enough of a sugar overload. I had to try their bacon maple doughnut, since I have been hearing enough about it in utah, and then I got a mango doughnut that had mango filling and some sort of tasty marshmallow, candy, sour topping on the doughnut. No idea what it was really, but it was good! Ty got a chocolate doughnut that had crushed oreos and peanut butter and other stuff all over it and then his mustache doughnut pictured below. I seriously wish we had this place in Salt Lake, it was so good!

Then we headed to the zoo and were pretty much the only people there, it was great! Ty and I were like little kids watching all the animals and being fascinated like we had never seen them before. This little black monkey was being a total show off with us and loved our attention.

This lady behind me in the picture really wanted us to pet her goats :)

We ended up spending like 3 and a half hours at this little zoo and had a blast but then ended up not having time to see the Japanese Gardens before they closed. Guess that's another reason for us to go back to Portland!

Our final stop of the day was the aerial tram. This tram is the only one in the US that is used for public transportation. It doesn't take you anywhere except for the hospital, but you can see all of Portland when you are on it. Well turns out it was $4 a person to ride that thing and the whole event probably lasted like 3 minutes. What can we say, I guess we're suckers for these kinds of things.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Oregon Trip!

Get ready for a few posts on our Oregon trip! We had so much fun and it was nice to get away before we have to invest all of our time in landscaping this summer. I'm sure more of that talk will come later though.

We left on a Saturday morning and didn't want to waste anytime. We headed straight to the famous Saturday Market in downtown Portland, it was the first one of the year. There were so many cool artists there and I was tempted to buy about everything, but I managed to resist! This market is basically like the Farmers Market in Salt Lake but it is so much bigger. It's one of the biggest markets in the country.

After the market we decided to eat at the street vendors, which is another famous Portland thing. Each food vendor sells something unique, whether it's vietnamese, greek, or polish. I walked away with the most amazing grilled cheese sandwich I've ever had. The vendors did not disappoint!

After a much needed vacation nap (I know, already on the first day we're there) we grabbed dinner at Buffalo Wild Wings and headed to Star Theatre for a concert.

I know what you're thinking, and no we did not attend the Giggle and Blush Peepshow :) We went to the Noah Gundersen and Joshua James concert. Tyler heard about Joshua James first in Sacramento and has taught me to love his music just as much as he does. The concert was amazing and we listened to his music the whole rest of the trip, didn't even get sick of it ;)

This is just a cool shot that Ty got of the hotel we stayed at. It was very nice and right in downtown Portland. Ty and I planned our trip so that we wouldn't need to rent a car for the time we spent in Portland. Little did we know that Portland is probably the easiest place to get around using public transportation. Using our Iphones, we could route anywhere we wanted to go and never had to wait for a bus or the light rail for longer than 5 minutes. Our hotel was in the perfect location for us to do this.

On Sunday we woke up leisurely and decided to walk to OMSI, Portland's science museum. We went  on $2 Sundays so the line was long to get in to it but it was so worth it. Take a look at this picture below and see if you can find something wrong in it other than Tyler hugging a tree man:

Anyone? Anyone? ...The sneak picture of the car accident right behind! We were just walking along and all of a sudden I hear this loud CRUNCH thinking it was a garbage truck or something. Oh no. It was a four car pile up and the poor girl who started the whole accident got the worst of it and was just beside herself. I felt so bad for her :( but it made for a cool picture!

Anyways, continuing our walk to the museum. Gotta do some awesome poses right?

This is the only picture that I got at the museum and it's because I was so proud of myself! They had a bunch of mind-puzzle type games and I tried probably 10 of them and was only able to solve this one. Tyler then goes on to solve it and says, "Wow that one was so easy!"

After the museum we were starved and it seemed like we walked forever to find a place to eat on that side of town. Then we walked some more to the mall and walked around and did some shopping. LOTS of walking! Oh and more walking to the Living Room Theatres that night to see Argo. The Living Room theaters was such a fun theater. You can order from the restaurant before the movie and then they bring the food to you and you eat it while sitting in your lounge chair watching a movie! A nice finish to our long day :)