Early Columbia River Trading – The Tall Ships and Beyond
Day One – The Peninsula Area
“Welcome to Land’s End”
Lunch will be served with a view of the wooden sculptures and the gigantic fry pan that is used for photo ops. Be sure and ask your wait staff about the significance of that pan! The restaurant is famous for their Eggs and Crab Benedict…sandwiches are delicious too. Your red carpet welcome awaits you at this regional museum. It is here that you will hear about how the Chinookan speaking Indians traveled these waters, the Clamshell railroad, and of course, the waterway travels of Lewis and Clark. Wear your trail walking shoes, as you will need them to reach the Chinook Cove, once a thriving Indian village and the point where Captain Nelson named the Columbia River. Dinner this evening will be at an establishment that is well known on the Coast. They are known for the ‘finest seafood to be found, award winning clam chowder and homemade desserts!”
Day Two – The Peninsula Area
“The mighty Columbia and her secrets”
Solve the mystery of the thousands of poles jutting out of the water and sands of the Columbia River. Learn about the piers, canneries, docks, fish traps, jetty railroads and other structures which spawned them. If available, you might be able to view these from the Long Beach Trolley. Your delectable lunch is hand crafted with freshly baked bread from a local bakery…famous for their pastries! Unbeknownst to most, the Columbia River had its own “Ellis Island”…and you will visit this famous or infamous site (the choice is up to you after your visit). Hear the stories of the thousands of immigrants that passed through these buildings. Late afternoon will bring you back to Long Beach for a walk along the Boardwalk, or shopping the retail stores and galleries, or maybe even taking an afternoon nap before your evening festivities. Dinner this evening will be a delight, not only the meal but the décor too. All ‘decked’ out in the nautical theme with historical photos and maps for your perusal.
Day Three – Astoria
“The Tall Ships”
“It was the finest view from the standpoint of scenic grandeur he had ever seen…”a quote from Electus Litchfield, the brilliant architect that helped raise the 125 foot column. Climb the stairs to the top for a view that is unparalleled! See the display of what a U.S. Coast Guard Cutter looks like in a 10 foot swell! Hear the reasons why they call this the “Graveyard of the Pacific!” See the relics of the trading ships that plied this water in the late 1700’s, early 1800’s and traded with the Native Americans for their precious shells, baskets, and bead work! Visit the mansion of one of the most influential citizens of Astoria. Captain Flavel was a noted bar pilot and a prominent businessman. In keeping with the Victorian theme, you will be taking your High Tea in another Victorian mansion, hosted by the owners of the Benjamin Young Inn Bed and Breakfast. At the next attraction, look for the display that includes a 1,000 year old hunting implement, Chinook and Clatsop Indian baskets, and on the second floor, “Vice and Virtue in Clatsop County: 1890 to Prohibition” exhibit. Enjoying your free time, make use of the Astoria Riverfront Trolley, or browse the unique shops and galleries. Dinner this evening will be right on the waterfront….excellent cuisine, locally owned, and be sure and save room for dessert!
Day Four – South Bend, Raymond and Tokeland
“The Early Days”
Sit back and enjoy the passing views as you travel inland towards the bay on the leeward side of the Peninsula. First stop will be at a small museum that is filled with the historical and natural history objects. While that is important, it is the stories of the volunteer docents that will keep your interest alive! We have all seen the movie, “Gone With The Wind”, but to see the actual carriages that was used in the film is quite another thing. It doesn’t take much imagination, and you can actually visualize Scarlett or Belle Watling in their carriages! Lunch is going to be at a National Historic Landmark overlooking Willapa Bay and the Pacific Ocean. It is the oldest resort hotel in Washington State, but don’t let that deter you…your taste buds will thank you after you try their grilled crab and cheddar on sourdough sandwich and for dessert…the blackberry cobbler….YUMMMMY! Last stop of the day is at the museum that contains “an astonishing myriad of marine artifacts, information, insight, humor and memorabilia, all of a nautical significance.” The venue for dinner this evening overlooks the Long Beach Golf Course…lush and green meets the eye, but your palate will be singing quite a different tune! Locally owned and locally grown…you will love the ambience and fare!
Day Five – Ilwaco
“On the Water”
“See the sights and hear the sounds on the Columbia River Estuary – by water!” Narrated by a member of the Pacific Northwest Living Historians, will allow you to journey along the Columbia River and learn about the river’s past and present culture. Wear non slip shoes; bring your wind proof jacket and sunglasses, as you will be on one of the charter vessels moored at the pier. Lunch is on your own and there is a variety of restaurants to choose from. The balance of the afternoon can be spent browsing the galleries, shopping or just sitting on one of the benches and watch the fleet comes in and out of the harbor. While enjoying your dinner and sunset high above the beach, and looking out over the vast Pacific Ocean, we hope that the memories you have of the last few days will remind you to come back…and bring your whole family!