Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Crissey Field State Park and Welcome Center

Just south of Brookings, less than a quarter-mile from the California State Line, is a newish state park and Oregon Welcome Center. The center, above, seems to fit well with its surroundings. A trail to the beach can be found on the north side of the center from the parking lot, or from the center itself down graveled paths to the trail. Finding the trail from the beach is another story -- I was about ready to start scrambling over driftwood.

When I first arrived the morning fog still shrouded the shoreline, but that quickly lifted to warm sunshine. This is a very long beach -- stretches well south into California and connects at low tide across the Winchuck River Mouth to another long stretch going north. And quiet -- very few people.

This Sea Star seemed to have just washed up in the surf -- either dead or dying, no doubt. Fascinating critters, to me.

I walked far enough south that I was probably in California -- no way to be certain. There is a huge outcropping of mussels here, but since I wasn't sure what state I was in, and since my Oregon shellfish license wouldn't help much in California, I opted not to take any home for dinner. I'd say these rocks have already been harvested of edible size mussels anyway, for now. I turned around at this point -- was a good walk back to the car.

Looking north towards Brookings from the mussel beds -- beaches as far as the eye can see. Very peaceful and beautiful.

All in all, this is a very nice place to visit. As I was driving out, I saw trailhead signs for a Winchuck River Trail and for a wetlands trail. I was tempted, but had had enough for one day. Next time -- and soon.

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