Sunday, June 7, 2009


On our way home from the Oregon Coast Thursday, we stopped at Astoria. This historic town is located on the southern bank of the Columbia River, where the river meets the sea. Once a busy seaport who's cannery row boasted more than twenty fish processing plants, it is now a quiet village watching the river traffic heading up stream or back out to sea. In 1966 the bridge over the mouth of the Columbia was complete, joining Washington and Oregon.
Just under the bridge is a Pilot Boat. Ships must pick up bar pilots out at sea, and then trade them off for river pilots to go upstream. The Columbia bar is one of the most dangerous in the world, known as the graveyard of the Pacific. The river must be traveled carefully to avoid sandbars. As an attraction for tourists, Astoria began running a waterfront trolley about ten years ago. It seemed like a great idea for the kids, big and little.
Irene thought the observation deck looked scary, but she made it up and back with some hand holding.
While we were on the trolley, the guide pointed out the sea lions, so we went back to check them out.
These are all males, and they are regular visitors, so they are marked with numbers. Seems the females are down south off the California coast. The males travel there to seek a mate. Those who fail return north and are known as the Astoria Losers.
Looks like a pretty good life to me. But they are not so popular with the locals. Seems they have a nasty habit of going after the salmon runs, but they take just one big bite out of the belly of the fish and waste the rest. Obviously there are many parallels between the human and animal worlds.
Jill and the kids are off for an overnight with cousins. We're enjoying a little down time.


  1. We drove through Astoria. It looked like a pretty little town. I'll have to try the trolley sometime. Driving over the bridge was amazing!

  2. I like Astoria. I like the long bridge too. Did you go to the Columbia Maritime Museum? It is so great and you can go aboard one of the ships. Fun to spend time with the Grands but also, as you said, down time is nice too. MB

  3. This was such a fun post, Linda. About that belly thing with the seals. I remember my mother's friend giving us the belly part of a fish and my mother preparing it. I was really surprised at just how incredibly delicious it was. It must be fatty down there or something. What fun to look at those seals. I'll bet the kids had a blast.

  4. I love Astoria! It has always been one of my favorite places to visit. Looks as though you all had a fun day!

  5. LOL...yes...they do look like some humans I know....
    Michelle From Rambling Woods

  6. The seals are really a hazzard to the salmon. The problem is that they were protected, and thus over populated.


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