Going to the Washington State International Kite Festival with Mike and Rhonda means taking the long way around... and it's a real pleasure to get there that way. The long way around means going up the Oregon coast, taking in all it's beauty. It’s a long drive but worth it for the scenery. After driving all night (except for an early A.M. breakfust stop) we stopped around 7:30 A.M. for a restroom break at this beautiful little beach just north of Newport There wasn’t a soul on the beach.
After making a stop in Tillamook for grocery supplies at Costco and Fred Meyer's, we crossed the bridge over the Columbia river and made our way out the peninsula to Long Beach, arriving around 7 PM. Time for some serious sleep.
On Sunday we drove down to Ilwaco Marina to visit our favorite local artist, Don Nisbett. Don is a water color artist and has done several posters and merchandise artwork for the festival, including this year's.
Don, about to sign a print for me
Artwork for this year's poster
Crab flying a kite on the beach
We returned to Long Beach after lunch and walked down to the festival site to purchase official merchandise... tee shirts, mugs, pins, etc. Fliers were already out on the beach a day ahead of time practicing stunt kite routines or just enjoying one of their kites flying on the smooth beach wind.
After making our purchases we walked the length of the boardwalk and then walked into town to play tourist. We did a little shopping and saw what there was to see.
Whale sculptures along the boardwalk
Lewis and Clark statue
Monday, the first day of the festival, was devoted to train kites and arches on the main competition field. My mission was to fly 'Big Boy' out on the giant-kite field. However, there was some fog in the morning; it had an eerie look, so I took a few photos before launching Big Boy.
Here's a couple of launches in the fog:
The fog was no match for the sun, burning off fairly quickly, leaving occasional wisps blowing through for another hour or so. Here's a short video of the last of the fog:
The sky filled up pretty quickly.
Big Boy with train kites in background
Here's some of the trains and arches.
Notice the arch kites in the right background
(if you click on the photo, you'll get a larger image)
About 1 PM I brought big Boy down, got some lunch and headed back to our cabin for a shower and some rest (launching, flying and recovering Big Boy is really hard work on sand). Later in the afternoon Mike and Rhonda showed up from their day at the beach and suggested we go see Disappointment Lighthouse. It was worth the .6 mile trail hike to see it and the views.
Along the trail we saw this very secluded cove and beach.
All lighthouses are picturesque, and Disappointment is no exception.
And, oh yes, the view!
As you can see by the last photo, there was still about an hour to go until sunset. Sooo... we went to North Head Lighthouse which is only a mile or so around the point from Disappointment (Disappointment lights the way from the north side of the Columbia mouth, North Head is on the ocean side just north of the Columbia mouth to warn ships approaching). We were the last visitors to leave and got some great photos of the lighthouse with the setting sun.
It was a nice finish to a very full day. What fun and adventure will tomorrow bring? Stay tuned.