Washburne/China Creek Loops

August 14, 2010

As the Willamette Valley oven was heating up, we were strolling along the surf at low tide, dodging whiffs of drifting mist in delightfully cool weather. Although several reefs were exposed, the tide pools had apparently vacated for the summer. We went all the way south to Heceta Head, then backtracked a bit to the Hobbit Trail entrance. Actually, it is now called the “Beach Trail” and the beach is called “Hobbit Beach.” There were no hobbits noticed in either locale and the previously known “Hobbit Trail” is only a few yards long now, with what was once the upper entrance totally blocked off.

After a short snack break at the beaver pond, we proceeded along the forest trail to the meadow, where we had a relaxing lunch in the sun, kept cool by a steady ocean breeze. Then, once everyone reluctantly resumed their hiking mission, we did the China Creek Loop, paused at the remains of the old cabin that burned down a century ago (supposedly taking a life, but leaving no remains... the mystery component of our day’s journey). Through the campground and onto the surf again for our final short stretch back to the cars. Some of us stopped for ice cream on the way home, preparing ourselves for the 100 degree heat awaiting us. The leader was continuously thanked for arranging the fine weather and he accepted all praise with due modesty.

Special thanks to Brad Bennett and Penny McAvoy for generously offering to drive. Other members on the trip were: Myron Cook, Marshall Kandell, John Moser, Noy Rathakette and Nancy Whitfield. Nonmembers included Shirley Shiffman and former members Mary Morrison and Sherwood Jefferies, who met us at the trailhead.

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