Lighthouses, Dunes, and RV Park Poles (Bullard State Park, OR)

We left the Three Rivers Casino RV parking lot by 10 AM on Thursday.  It rained off and on all night.  It was still overcast and a little foggy in the morning, but by the time we made our first stop in Reedsport, the sun was out again.

We wanted to check out the sand dunes that  I had read and heard so much about.  All the tourist guidebooks and pamphlets we picked up along  our Hwy 101 travels, mention this “must-see” area when visiting the Oregon coast.  Here’s my friend Wikipedia’s scoop on the place:

The only problem with visiting the 40 miles of dunes, is figuring out which areas I can get into – and more importantly, back out of – with a 38 1/2 ft Motorhome pulling a Silverado.  So, my solution was to stop at the Oregon Dunes Visitor Center in Reedsport, OR.  The nice power ranger, er, I mean park ranger behind the counter gave us maps and info flyers but she was unsure which access roads were big-rig friendly.  So to be safe, I asked her if we could leave our motorhome in the parking lot while we unhooked our truck and drove on to check it out.  She said no problem.  Here’s a picture of the Visitor Center parking lot where we left the Urban Escape Vehicle for awhile.


Here are the informational placards in front of the Visitor Center for your viewing pleasure:




We chose the Umpqua Dunes & Beach Access Road for two reasons; 1) It was just South of town and therefore the closest, and 2) There was another lighthouse there.

Our first stop was at the beach.  Here you can see the lighthouse in the background.


Little Coach had fun once again running around on the beach.  He was as curious as I was about what all those floats (drums) were about in the water between the two jettys.  I’m guessing they might have something to do with an oyster farm or some such thing.  I forgot to ask someone.. so I guess, it’ll remain a mystery.




Here’s some pics of the dunes.  Pretty impressive, sure wish I had my ATV.  It also got me to wondering if my fine younger brother in Casa Grande, AZ is taking care of my Can Am.  I left it at his 5-acre “dirt farm” (his term, not mine) back in January.  I’ve heard a lot about sand storms and floods in that part of the country. HMMM?




We watched some ATVs running up and down this hilltop for awhile, pretty awesome.


And then of course, we had to check out another lighthouse.



The museum near the lighthouse was pretty cool.  We took a tour, but this time I’ll spare you the inside pictures.


Boat in front of the Umqua River Lighthouse Museum.
I made Stilla stop and turn around for a picture in front of the museum… she likes it when I do that.
RV parking at the Lighthouse Museum. I’m pretty sure they belong to volunteers. I’ve read a blog or two of some folks that do this sort of thing pretty often.

Here’s the view back to the beach over some dunes from a viewing platform in front of the lighthouse, which also doubles as a whale watching station… we didn’t see any whales 🙁



After our lighthouse, beach, and dune excursion… we went back to the Visitor Center where we had left the Motorhome and made ourselves lunch.  Then we headed on South again.  Here’s another one of those bridges designed and built by McCullough, this is the one over Coos Bay leading into North Bend.




Once through the towns of North Bend and then Coos Bay we motored on down towards Bandon.  Our destination for the day is Bullards Beach State Park, and guess what… they have a lighthouse there!  Here’s the Coquille River Lighthouse built in 1896.


We rode our bikes here from our RV site.  We didn’t know that it was 3 miles, one way.  Oh well, the exercise did us some good and the weather was perfect.





We also spent some time on the beach here as well.  Coach always likes that!


And now, I saved the best for last… as I was pulling into our designated spot at the RV park, I tagged this pole with the Coach right behind the front passenger side tire.


When we arrived around 4:30 PM, we unhooked at the park entrance and Stilla followed me in the truck to our site.  They only had a few sites left when we checked in and this was supposed to be the largest of those according to the power ranger at the gate that took my $28.

As you can (hopefully) see from this pic, our site is on the left where the Silverado is parked.  It’s a back-in site, and the pole I hit is at the entrance to the site on the right.  I guess I was so worried about clearing the tree and bushes on the left, that when I pulled partially into the site on the right to get positioned to back into our site, I overlooked the pole because I had already passed it and I was busy looking in my left mirror to make sure the rear cleared.  When I turned the wheel left and backed up, I heard the sickening thump and screech.  The bottom-line is that I should have waited for Stilla to ground guide me, which is our normal procedure.  What a bone-head move.


Here’s the damage.



And here’s what it looks like now after a lot of frantic polishing.  I found a (somewhat) appropriate sticker to put over the biggest scrape…  So what do you think?  Go ahead… I can take it 🙂



Total distance travelled for the day was 70 miles.

Stay tuned for more Urban Escape Vehicle adventures…

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