Of all the places we have seen in the United States, Oregon has to be one of our favorite places to spend the summer.
My very first teaching job right out of college and Jon’s work time spent as a police officer both took place in Oregon. We also made some dear friends who are more like family we continue to stay in touch with, so it will always be a special place for us.
We have always told our kids about our memories in the summer there spent camping, picking, berries, and of course eating at our favorite place for Hawaiian BBQ, so they have been looking forward to it for years. (Go eat at Local Boyz, you will thank me later! Not sure what to order? Get a #6 and a #20. Yum!)
We were headed to Corvallis to see friends and then to the coast, but on the way, we made sure to visit Crater Lake. Now, we have been there before, but catching it in July was the best ever, We went early to avoid the crowds and it was breathtaking.
Picture mounds of clean snow still melting and the warm sun on your face as you walk out to a beautiful view point. As you look into the crater, your breath is taken away from the extreme depth and clarity of the water. It is a deep ice blue and if you listen, you can hear water trickling and maybe even a natural landslide occur.
After walking the paved path edge, we made our way down to a lookout that had some information about the history of the crater, excellent places to take pictures, and a closer look that even allowed us to see where the cliffs meet the water.
When you visit, it is a spectacular view from the edge and an experience you can top off with a souvenir if you want. (We enjoy collecting ornaments from different places we visit).
We enjoyed it all then headed out to make our way across the Cascade Mountain Range and enjoy the view and environment of Sisters for lunch on our way.
If you go in the summer, it will probably be packed so you’ll want to make reservations early. However, if you make it to the KOA near Corvallis, OR, you can sneak into town and order Local Boyz Takeout, then go to a beautiful picnic lunch and let your kids play at the park.
That’s what we did.
Our first night in Corvallis, we drove around and showed the kids where we used to live, the university, and picked up our favorite cold local milk.
It felt so good to be “home” again! We spent four days visiting with friends, taking Abbie to her first rodeo, going blueberry picking, buying local fresh fruits and vegetables and then headed out to the coast.
For our coast experience, we stayed in Newport on the bay at a beautiful room at the Embarcadero Resort, enjoyed fresh clam chowder bowls at Mo’s Chowder, sat on benches oceanside and did whale watching in Depot Bay, and enjoyed crabbing near Cannon Beach. (For a friendly, fun, and unique crabbing experience, go to Kelly’s for the best time! We had never done this before and it was an absolute blast taking the kids out on a boat in the harbor and netting our own fresh crab for lunch!)
The views are breathtaking and you can’t ask for better weather!
If you are looking for an amazing summer experience, add Oregon to your list!
Fresh food, hikes, outdoor experiences, and smiles make for great summer memories! Plus, who doesn’t enjoy waterfalls and Multonomah Falls is one of the best!