Oregon Dunes - May 28, 2011
Coordinator Lois Soulia, narration by Lois Soulia and pictures by Katsuaki Terasawa

Saturday, May 28, eleven members of the Friends of the Umpqua set out to follow the blue-tipped posts through the Oregon Dunes to the ocean.  It had been raining all month, and it was raining on the way there so the coordinator decided to sacrifice comfort for the good of the club and wear the dreaded poncho the rest of the day.  The stratagem worked! The hike proceeded without rain the rest of the day. 

The evil Scotch Broom was in full bloom and could have been admired for the beauty of its blooms and fragrance if everyone had not known it for the pest it is.  Every year it spreads more and more.

The group started the hike by taking the northern route across the dunes, through the deflation plain through the almost inpenetratable shore pine forest. There weren’t even very many puddles in the trail, a surprise considering the rainfall.

Reaching the ocean the hikers were treated to magnificent views of an ocean bordered by amazing clouds but no rain and very little wind.  The group hiked south down the beach and found the access trail back to the Oregon Dunes Trailhead, passed that intersection and nine hikers  headed on down the beach to where Tahkenitch Creek comes down to the ocean.  Two hikers stayed back at the intersection to meet the group at the trailhead later.

Lunch was on the sandy drifts above the mouth of the creek.  There was quite a surge on the creek and the lone fisherman in the group soon gave up on catching anything.  During lunch the group was approached by a Forest Service Employee  who asked them to move away from the lunch area because of the possibility of disturbing the snowy plovers  who were in the process of hatching chicks near where they stopped to dine.  It must be noted, however, that the hikers had not crossed the “Plover Line".

 Jim had noticed a half buried tangle  of thick rope on the way down the beach and finding it again the gang began digging the rope out of the sand and untangling the knots.  With a lot of work by some and supervision by the rest, the rope was hauled back to the trailhead where it rode in sandy splendor and went home divided among  three members also covered in sandy splendor.

It was a great day of hiking with no rain or wind to spoil the scenery and a most congenial group of people. The distance was a little less than usual, but Don’s Diner in Reedsport was calling with its ice cream and pie siren call and of course every mile in sand is worth two on solid ground so the group passed on climbing the Taylor Dunes.

Enjoy Katsuaki's pictures

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