We had a break in the weather, and the kids ran around exploring all these little sand ponds created by all the recent rainfall. Most of them were no more than a couple of feet deep, and some had little freshwater clam bubbles rising up.
The terrain of all these little hills and ponds was a lot of fun for the kids to run around on, and they enjoyed playing games with their footprints in the sand.
The evidence of rain in little rivulets worn in the edges of the ponds made for a beautiful sight. It looked like little miniature watersheds with all the networks and fans of streams.
With all that rain came a beautiful rainbow arching over the sky. It remained for quite a while, and I am taking it to be a good sign for the year to come.
One of the fun things about sand dunes is climbing up and jumping down. My son had a good time on this particularly tall one doing just that.
He hauled out a bundle of invasive European beach grass roots he gathered for my nest-making projects. What a thoughtful young man I have.
Finally some foul weather blew in again with horizontal drizzle blowing against our faces. My daughter, and her best friend both ran out of good spirits at this point, and we had to deal with some melt-downs. I have to remind myself sometimes that parenting is an adventure all on its own, which might not always coincide with whatever idyllic outdoor adventure I had planned. At least my son was being really helpful. We took a break for snacks in the car, went on a search for a lost water bottle, and were able to enjoy the rest of the afternoon out on the beach with some clear, mild weather. Nine-year-old meltdowns aside, it was a good excursion to the sand dunes.
Directions to Baker Beach: About 5.5 miles North of Florence on Highway 101, turn west on Baker Beach Road and follow to the end. The Baker Beach Trails can make a seven mile hike in all, and the Lily Lake Trail is an easy one-mile loop, great for smaller children. This is a day use fee site where USFS recreation passes are honored. There are also five campsites with vault toilets, picnic tables, and fire rings for about 10$ per night.
To find out more about the dunes, places to camp, and recreational activities, visit the USFS website at: http://www.fs.fed.us/r6/siuslaw/recreation/tripplanning/oregondunes/