|Pacific Ocean from Hwy 101|
Last December, after a particularly tough day at work, I sat down at my computer, pulled up the Harris Beach State Park website, and impulsively made yurt reservations for late April. This time I promised myself I'd make that trip - come hell or high water.
|My lovely yurt at Harris Beach State Park|
And the last week of April I did just that - loading my car with camera gear, food, and camping supplies in preparation for a long weekend of exploring the southern Oregon coast. After an extremely long 6 1/2 hour drive, I finally arrived at my home for the weekend - a lovely yurt at Harris Beach State Park near the town of Brookings.
As far south as one can go on the Oregon Coast, Brookings is located just over the California border. The surrounding area boasts plenty of natural beauty, including picturesque rugged coastlines, lovely wild beaches, plus plenty of coves, capes, and offshore islands to explore and photograph.
Photographing this beauty was why I'd traveled here. After unloading and grabbing a quick bite of dinner, it was time to stretch my legs and warm up the camera.
|Evening beach walk|
Right away I fell in love with Harris Beach State Park. Not only was the campground wooded, green and gorgeous, a short trail led me right to the ocean shore. No driving necessary!
|Someone had drawn these perfect circles in the sand|
I had a couple of hours until sunset, so I meandered along the beach, snapping images of anything that caught my fancy. Like a huge area of identical circles someone had raked into the sand.
|Mother and daughter having fun|
I watched a mother and daughter climbing on the shoreline rocks.......
|Seaweed on a rock|
Studied the seaweed clinging to a large boulder.....
|I could've watched the waves forever|
Watched the waves endlessly crash and recede......(so mesmerizing!)
And laughed at a flock of seagull's antics.
The day had been gloomy with intermittent rain showers for most of my trip. With the overcast skies, I thought the evening sunset would be a bust. So imagine my surprise when a half hour before dusk, a break in the clouds illuminated the beach with warm light.
|Fantastic evening light|
The colors just popped! It was the most fantastic evening light. Truly a photographer's dream.
Soon the sun began it's journey towards the horizon. Searching the rocky coastline, I found a place that I hoped would provide an interesting enough background for the colorful sky show to come.
An incoming tide began to swallow up the available beach real estate. Waiting for the sun to drop, I periodically had to move my tripod further back to escape a drenching by the waves.
|A sinking sun turned the sky colors|
Soon the sky started to glow in the most fabulous shades of orange and pink. These colors reflected perfectly on the wet sand. The sun sank towards the horizon, and I kept snapping away, capturing this wonderful first night on the southern Oregon coast.
|Colorful reflections in the wet sand|
I stayed out until the last light faded from the sky. By now the incoming tide had transformed the beach into a narrow strip of sand, so I had to carefully pick my way back to the main road.
A great start to my weekend! Tomorrow I had big plans to explore the beaches, bluffs, and short trails along the Samuel H Boardman Scenic Corridor. More posts to come, so stay tuned!