Oh, you are so fine...Harris Beach State Park at sunset

Oh, you are so fine…Harris Beach State Park at sunset

Oh yeah, I could linger here a while

Oh yeah, I could linger here a while

We’re in the banana belt and the natives are restless…or rather the Scandinavian nomad travelling through this sunny beach-town is taking rather a lot of photos & needs to blog more often! We’re in travel-mode again and it’s an energizing time. I always seem to have inertia to get moving once we’ve settled in a spot, but then I love it when we finally do. “The beast” was meant to drive, and when that big old 400HP Cummins Engine roars to life you feel the pull of the road and the draw of the wilds. Ahhhh, the wide open trails, the endless possibilities!! This is what RVing is all about, is it not?

Polly poses on gorgeous Harris State Beach

Polly poses in our new “back yard”

Brookings Harbor in early light

Brookings Harbor in early light

But back to this banana thing. I’ve been wanting to come to Brookings for ages, and very specifically Harris State Beach Park. It’s the southernmost portion of the Oregon Coast (thus the inferred banana-happy weather), the only part we’ve never seen and I’d been lured here by bloggers “The MoHo And Other Travels” who’ve raved about it for years. We arrived early this week and set-up in our gorgeous green spot with slice of ocean view out the front (not too shabby). As RV serendipity would have it, who would happen to be here at exactly the same time but Sue & Mo from The MoHo herself?? I got a comment on the blog inviting me to their campfire and within moments I was chatting with both lovely ladies & their friends just a few hundred feet away. No photos taken, sadly, but a fine evening with some fine bloggers. Don’t you just love those coincidences?

Wild waves in evening light

Wild waves in evening light

Apart from being an RV blogger magnet, the thing that’s been drawing out my camera and piling up the shots is the gorgeous nature of the park itself. It’s yet another excellent Oregon State Park with the bonus of a pretty rock-silhouetted beach just 10 mins walk from camp. It’s the perfect place to lounge in camp, hike to the sand w/ pooch and snap those elusive sunset shots. Sue & Mo almost never leave the place when they come here, and having lingered a few days I can see why.

This is the place to come for fish & chips

This is the place to come for fish & chips

The town of Brookings itself is not as cutsey as some of the other towns we’ve seen on the Coast having no real downtown or old town area, but it has all the shopping you need as well as a rather nice harbor. The latter is probably the most interesting part of town and offers some pretty marina views, nice shops and (probably the most important thing) a really good fish & chip place in the form of Chetco Seafood Company (thank you Sue&Mo for the tip!). Should you feel compelled to camp there you can even dry-camp right on the water for a mere $17/night.

Vista at Samuel H Boardman State Park

One of many vistas at Samuel H Boardman State Park

But that’s not all! Just to the north of us is more good stuff in the form of Samuel H.Boardman State Park. This 12-mile stretch of wild and cliff-lined coast is dedicated to the first superintendent of OR State Parks. Way back in 1919 this man had the vision to acquire state lands so the likes of us can enjoy them today. The park covers many scenic stops and large portions of rarely-used parts of the Oregon Coast Trail as well as encompassing Oregon’s highest bridge, the 345 feet (105 m) high Thomas Creek Bridge. We spent a superb afternoon with doggie hiking portions of the trail, climbing around on the Indian Sands (unique sandstone formations) and enjoying deserted Whaleshead Beach.  See all the stops by milepost HERE. Just awesome!!

We’ll be spending a few more days in this little southern tropical paradise before shooting across to the mountains. So far, the place has lived up to it’s reputation of fine, sunny weather albeit in the 60’s rather than true equatorial temps (who am I to quibble with such small discrepancies?). We may not be camping amongst banana-trees, or (for that matter) anyone dancing in grass skirts but I remain ever hopeful. We are at the southern tip of Oregon, after all, and the natives are restless….

Post Blog Addition: A Few Notes On Recent Developments Affecting RV Travellers

I wanted to make a quick comment on 2 things which may be affecting ours (and other) RV travellers in the near future:

Walking on deserted Whaleshead Beach

Walking on deserted Whaleshead Beach

Another perfect sunset at the park

Another perfect sunset at the park

Federal Lands Closure: The government shut-down on Oct 1st closed ALL federal campgrounds including National Parks, National Forest, BLM and COE including those run by concessionaires. If you were planning to stay at these spots in the near future my advice is to make alternate plans. State Parks are *not* affected, and our information is that boondocking/dispersed camping on undeveloped public land is (as of yet) not affected. We have adjusted our near-term travel plans to suit and will probably be boondocking most of October in the Eastern Sierras instead of staying in NFS & BLM campgrounds.

Affordable Health Care Act: As you all know the ACA Exchanges opened on Oct 1st, but (as of yet) I’ve not been able to get in or known anyone else who’s been able to get in. Whether the new health care act will give more insurance options for nomads is yet to be determined. There is no doubt it will benefit those with pre-existing conditions, and those who are able to get subsidies, but for young nomadic RV folk (such as ourselves) I have yet to make a judgement. As I gather more info on this I’ll be sure share our results & decisions with you on the blog….stay tuned!

Playing on the beach w/ doggie in the early AM

Early morning play w/ doggie

Fine clouds at Harris State Beach

Fine clouds at Harris State Beach

Final hours

Final hours

Sunset birds

Sunset birds

Boats in Brookings Harbor

Boats in Brookings Harbort

Posing at White Sands

Posing at Indian Sands

Reflections in water

Reflections in water

Clouds & sea at Harris SP

Clouds & sea at Harris SP

33 Responses to Lounging In The Banana Belt! Brookings, OR

  1. Sue says:

    So happy to see your post (s) about Brookings. We tried to get into Harris Beach SP and couldn’t so we’ll have to be content seeing the area through your eyes. All in all, the next best way.
    Sue

    • libertatemamo says:

      This is a fine State Park, but it is VERY busy. It stays almost completely booked all summer and has been full everyday since we’ve been here (it went 1st come 1st serve Oct 1st for the “discovery” season). I can see why people love it here, but it’s tough to get in.
      Nina

  2. Janna says:

    And to think we missed Brookings! It wasn’t very nice of you to post such beautiful beach photos and brag about your 60 degree weather when we are sitting with 2 feet of snow on the ground–the sun is shining now, it is 38 degrees, things are melting and my handy husband is plowing the driveway. I too tried to access the federal insurance exchange yesterday and never could get on. If you and Paul are missing the snow you can always come over this way for a visit–I am sincerely hoping when this melts we have a little more Indian summer!

    • libertatemamo says:

      I was thinking of you and all that snow up there today!! As tempting as the offer is, I think we’ll stay down here in the banana area. Hope it warms up for you.
      Nina

  3. Donna K says:

    So glad you were able to make a stop in Brookings and Harris Beach. Love your picture of the waves at sunset – just beautiful. Make sure and visit Chetco Point Park – it’s a fine walk for humans and doggies!!

  4. Donna K says:

    Forgot to tell you, there is a sperm whale skeleton on the beach at Chetco Point Park…washed ashore last June and is now nothing but the bones. Might be interesting…we didn’t make it all the way down to see it but the locals talk about it.

    • libertatemamo says:

      Very cool! We’re running out of time here, but will have to see if we can squeeze that one in. Good tip!
      Nina

      • Rob says:

        “We’re running out of time here”. Strikes me as …. odd, no, odd is not the correct word. ‘Unhappy’ is what I want, with this lifestyle you can still say “We’re running out of time here”. :(
        Maybe next year?

        • libertatemamo says:

          Oh didn’t quite mean it like that. We have a service appt fixed on Monday and a few other things scheduled in between, so probably won’t get to it this time around. But we definitely plan to be back :)
          Nina

  5. Mary Kay Gehring says:

    Check out the Oregon Redwood Trail – it’s up the Chetco River. The trail is about a mile and a half loop through the northernmost Redwood Grove. One of the great things about it is that there is no poison oak along the trail – a huge bonus hiking with your dog!

    • libertatemamo says:

      What a fabulous tip! We visited the CA Redwoods yesterday and of course there’s nowhere to take your dog there (one of the most dog unfriendly places I’ve been), so having the OR side as an option is perfect! We’ll keep this in mind for next time we come through the area. Thank you!
      Nina

  6. If you’re planning to stop in Bishop, we found a good spot off Casa Diablo Rd less than 5 miles from town and less than a mile off of pavement. That was after we got evicted from Horton Creek!

  7. Donna K says:

    Another good place in Bishop – if you want water and electric and hot showers- is Brown’s Millpond Campground. Just north of Bishop on 395. See my post on 4-12-2011 if you want to see pictures.

  8. We’ve heard good things about Brookings but haven’t gotten there yet. Thanks for sharing your adventure with beautiful photos. I love the huge rocks off the shore line all along the coast.

    • libertatemamo says:

      The sea stacks here are very nice. Reminds me of the beach up by Bandon. It makes for pretty sunsets!
      Nina

  9. Ralph says:

    Beautiful ocean scenery..day after day..gotta get boring after awhile…lol!

    • libertatemamo says:

      You know it’s funny. Paul and I were walking along the beach the other day and we both turned to each other and said “I can’t believe we live this life”. Some people wait years to spend just a few days in a spot like this and we get to see it everyday. I do feel rather lucky…and it never gets old :)
      Nina

  10. geogypsy2u says:

    The entire OR coast is spectacular. Safe journey to the mountains and good luck with the boondocking.

    • libertatemamo says:

      Thanks much! We hope we’re able to find the kind of camping we like up there. And I hope these closures finish soon!
      Nina

  11. We spent last summer in the Brookings area and had a great time (came up and visited you and Paul at the lighthouse)…thanks for the great photos…brought back some good memories. We loved the marina area. A neat little place to eat is the “Hungry Clam” if you like clam chowder and fish & chips…reasonable prices as well! Looking forward to your posts as you work your way south.
    Trent (T&B Travels)

    • libertatemamo says:

      Well we’re always looking for good fish places so I’ll add this one to the list. The marina is definitely the most interesting part of town IMHO.
      Nina

  12. Jil Mohr says:

    Nice to see the photos…I especially like the one of the waves….I don’t think we made it to Brookings..need to add it to our ever growing list….

    • libertatemamo says:

      The State Park here is well worth the stop, although it’s very popular and can be a bit of a game of musical chairs to get in. Lovely area!
      Nina

  13. Several days behind in my reading… regarding the new health care act, remember, your premiums won’t go up and you can keep your same doctor. Also, you’ll save almost $2500 a year in premiums. Keep us posted as to your findings, thoughts and conclusions.

    • libertatemamo says:

      I think the savings will depend very much on your individual situation. Those with pre-existing conditions & those who qualify for subsidies will certainly see some reductions, but more than likely the premiums for our age group will increase. Our health care plan just jacked up their premiums (by around 50%) in preparation for implementation of the ACA. From the info I’ve gathered so far the plans that we’ll see through the exchange will be around those levels too. I’ve yet to see if the new plan offerings are nationwide and whether they’ll offer better options (deductables etc.). There may be differences by state too. Once I get into the system and look around I’ll certainly report back.
      Nina

  14. LuAnn says:

    Is there a single place along the OR coast that is not special? Yet another place to add to the ever-growing list. Thanks for mentioning the ACA. I have yet to get into the site and was wondering if you had had any success.

    • libertatemamo says:

      I’ve not heard of anyone who’s had success getting into the Federal Exchange. I’m running a Facebook thread on it and no-one there has any info. It’s rather frustrating. The system keeps giving me login problems. Hope it gets sorted out soon.
      Nina

  15. Linda says:

    Re: There are some of the NFS (National Forest Service) campgrounds managed by concessionaires that are open. We stayed in the White Mountains of Vermont at Zealand Campground (near Twin Mtn.) 9/30 – 10/2 and they were open. Many of the campgrounds there are run by Pro Sport, Inc. So…..hopefully there are more that are remaining open!

    • libertatemamo says:

      Thanks for that piece of info Linda. I was hearing varying reports on the concessionaire run campgrounds. I will be checking some of these out on our way south.
      Nina

  16. […] & Rays are less than a mile), plus a bike-path into town. Just north of the park is lovely Samuel H.Boardman State Park and just 10 miles south is Crescent City which has redwoods and a lovely lighthouse. Everything […]

  17. […] & Rays are less than a mile), plus a bike-path into town. Just north of the park is lovely Samuel H.Boardman State Park and just 25 miles south is Crescent City which has redwoods and a lovely lighthouse. Everything […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Set your Twitter account name in your settings to use the TwitterBar Section.