Friday, January 15, 2010

The Crazy Norwegian's and a Stormy Drive

Update: July 18, 2015. I visited The Crazy Norwegian's  yesterday for the first time since this original post was written, since I've been living on the east coast in the interim. It pains me to say this, but I was thoroughly disappointed in the fish & chips, after lusting after them from afar for all these years. The batter was thin, not very dark, rather tasteless, not crisp and fell off the fish. Totally different from my previous experiences here. An anomoly? I don't have a clue. The place was packed with a waiting line by 5pm nevertheless, and I expect much of the menu is still delicious. But  personally, I wouldn't recommend the fish & chips any longer. Sadly!

Some of the best fish & chips I've ever had are to be found at a funky little place in Port Orford called The Crazy Norwegian's.   Since I plan to be moving from Oregon soon, I've been itching to get up there for one last feast before I leave.  I also wanted to go with the friend who led me to this place, and we've been waiting for a sunny day, in the hopes of getting some decent photos off the coast on the drive north.  We've had sunny days, but this time of  year, in the off season, the restaurant is only open Thursday through Sunday and apparently, the sunny days haven't coincided with those days. It's been hard to coordinate.

No sunny weather today, either, despite a promising forecast.  Gray, dreary, super windy. But, I wasn't disappointed once I arrived at the destination.  Tender cod, crisp breading, tangy cole slaw, and an atmosphere that's hard to describe.  You'll just need to see it for yourself.  They have lots more on the menu, but I personally have never made it past the fish & chips.

Yes, a gray and dreary day all around, but the inside was cheery and the food wonderful.

We dawdled a good bit driving north -- not the best day for photography, but we couldn't help ourselves.  These birds -- seagulls and pelicans -- were massed by the hundreds on these piers in Gold Beach and flying in swarms above.

Not pretty critters, but interesting.  Neither of us had ever noticed the red and yellow on these guys before, nor so many of them clustered together in one spot.

We also stopped at Pistol River, just south of Gold Beach, to watch the huge waves that were crashing into all the rocks.  I can't blame these black and white photos on some nefarious activity of my camera.  There was simply no color out there.  Dreary, dreary, dreary.  The wind was so strong, I could barely stay balanced well enough to get these photos with the telephoto.  If the resolution isn't all that great when enlarged, that's the reason why.

These three are all the same rock with wave after wave crashing onto it.  There were lots of waves and lots of rocks, but this one seemed to be putting on the best show consistently.

Since I tend to be a lazy photographer and let the camera run on automatic, I can't set the shutter speed and thus don't get that lovely, crisp water-stopping effect, but still, I like the movement.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Aftermath of a Storm

Actually, it wasn't much of a storm, as storms go on this coast.  Blustery and wet for a few days.  But, even relatively minor storms can bring huge waves to the coast and watching these is a favorite local pastime.  And why not?  It's totally mesmerizing, enchanting. 

I first went down the the Port of Brookings mid-morning, because I'd heard high surf warnings on NPR and because the sun peeped out.  I barely got started when my camera battery died and I headed home to regroup. Both the above photos were taken then, along with a bunch of others.  This one is looking south, towards Crescent City. 

By the time I returned the sun had shifted entirely, of course, and the tide was much further out than just a couple of hours previously.  Not as exciting to photograph, but still exhilarating to watch.  This time, I walked down and onto the jetty to get a different point of view, looking south once more.  And, because of the light, my camera insisted upon capturing everything in black and white.  That seems to be its answer to bright light in its face, and I haven't found a way to counteract that. 

From my perch on the jetty.  I actually stayed out there for quite awhile, listening to the roar of the surf, the continual, raucous cries of the gulls, enjoying the wind and fresh air.  I shot a couple of videos -- first time out with this camera for that -- but operator trouble prevents me from posting them, as I don't have editing skills and both end rather unceremoniously.  These waves were not as impressive as the earlier ones, but pretty darned nice, regardless.

As I turned to leave the jetty, I was greeted by the sight of hundreds of gulls swirling over the harbor.  By the time I captured the photo, many of them had already landed on the roof of the Coast Guard station, but it was a really lovely sight.