Exploring Oregon

Thursday, June 9, 2016

We had a few requirements for our honeymoon:

1. Go immediately after our wedding
2. Somewhere easy + relaxed, where we wouldn't feel pressured to see a million art museums 
3. Somewhere neither of us have ever been

and, because of #1, we added:

4. Go somewhere that is at its peak in June

Madison is beautiful in June, so something pained me about hopping on a plane to the Caribbean (which is beautiful in February, when Madison is NOT). Still, Stephen loves the beach, so we landed on checking out Portland, Oregon briefly and spending a bulk of our time exploring the Oregon Coastline.

Now: let me preface this by saying we got unbelievably lucky with the weather. If you think gray skies and heavy rain when you think Oregon, you're probably right, but that was not our experience. It was sunny and vibrant and beautiful! 

Our first stop was Portland, a city that is somewhat reminiscent of my home city Pittsburgh with the rivers and bridges. We walked around and checked out the city, including hitting up the massive Powell's City of Books and grabbing ice cream at Salt + Straw that I'm still daydreaming about. So. Delicious.

The next morning, we took a run by the river:

And then went on a Willamette Valley wine tour via the Back Country Wine Tour company, which was my wedding gift to Stephen. (Pro tip: buy gifts that require you to drink wine—the things I do for love ;)

We stopped at four wineries: Brooks Wines, Maysara (run by 3 Persian sisters, it's name means "House of wine" in Farsi), De Ponte Cellars (home of Missy the cat!), and White Rose.

This region is famous for Pinot Noir...and, it turns out, Pinot Noir may just be my favorite red wine! It was really fascinating how the weather impacts the vintage. Just tasting a 2011 (cool year) and 2013 (hot year) made a really big difference. Not that I'm capable of explaining what the difference was. But I could discern that a difference existed. Especially when I was told about the existence of said difference ;) 

The next day...we headed west! The coast felt like Big Sur but WAY less people. We stayed in Cannon Beach, Oregon at The Ocean Lodge and I paid a little more (worth it) for the ocean views—including a view of Haystack Rock that never got old. (It seemed to magically transform with every hour of the day.)

A walk on the beach our first afternoon in Cannon Beach:

Views from Ecola State Park:

Van in Ecola State Park that just screamed "Oregon"

Views from Astoria (where the Goonies was set!)

Views from Oswald West State Park where we hiked the Cape Falcon trail...it was 2.5 miles out, but totally worth it! To me, it felt like walking the Pacific Coast Highway. So cool!:

And I'll end things with some sunset pictures:

If you're contemplating an Oregon trip, do it! We miss it already.

But the good news is Stephen + I have been to 15 states together...35 to go :)


  1. Glad you liked the Oregon coast. You definitely got a great weather weekend. Kortney and I loved our 4 years there and glad we could share it with some Wisconsin friends. Also glad you are now schooled in the mouthwatering wonderfulness that are Willamette Valley Pinot Noirs. Best wines in the world.
    -Pastor Nick

    1. Thanks, Nick! We really appreciated all the travel tips :)

  2. Congratulations! And beautiful photos. It looks like you had a lovely trip. :)

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