Exploring Astoria, Oregon – Part 2

As I mentioned in my previous post (see link below), we found much to do during our August, 2017 visit to Astoria, OR. We continued to explore the town and the nearby riverfront. The morning was very hazy/foggy; some of it caused by the abundant wildfires in surrounding areas.

Walking by the river, there were many scenes I found picture-worthy such as this shot of the sun poking out behind the crows nest of a small ship.

Waterfront ship's crows nest with sun

We were interested in a paddle wheeler, the American Empress, that was moored at a nearby dock. We headed toward the ship and met two passengers along the way. They explained that the steamship was sidelined because of the wildfires and was “stuck” in Astoria until the air quality and wildfires improved enough for them to head upriver.

Paddleboat Steamship anchored in Astoria

Even the moss covered pylons against the mossy green and grey of the rocks led to a few colorful snaps.

Moss covered rocks and pilons create a colorful scene

We often enjoy speaking with the agents at the local visitor’s center and I need to brag about the Astoria staff and facility. They had many varied and interesting resources and we enjoyed learning about some of the local favorites uncovered through our questioning of the agents. The bus below was parked outside and little did I know it was the living quarters of someone and not an attraction; sorry!

Fanciful bus outside the visitor's center

Even with the fog, the aura of the waterfront was alluring and picturesque.

The fog created an eeerie waterfront mood

We read about the Astoria Column and the staff at the visitor’s center encouraged us to visit. There is a small parking fee of $5 that covers a year of parking. The car ride was uphill and the road to the tower was curvy. The column was constructed 600 feet above sea level on Coxcomb Hill. It is 125 feet high and those electing to ascend it will need to climb 164 steps.

Once in the parking area, you can look around and notice some of the sights Astoria has to offer. The view below shows the Megler Bridge partially covered by fog.

walking up the hill to the Astoria Column

You can see a person walking to the tower. If you don’t need to park, the visit is free!

Below is another view from the parking area.

Another view from the Astoria Column's parking area

Leaving the car, we hiked up the small hill to the base of the tower that commemorates the major events in Astoria history.

A closeup of the lower portion of the Astoria Column

It took a while to ascend the tower’s steps, but it really wasn’t too difficult (IMO).

Asotria Column circular stairway

The bird’s-eye view afforded by the column’s vantage point was very interesting.

Bird's-eye view from the top of the Astorial Column

There was a young man doing his morning exercises on the grounds and he ran up the tower and handed small, wooden gliders to the visitors so they could be tossed into the wind. He explained that he will later go around to collect them.

Small model gliders flung from the top of the Astoria Column

I enjoyed this view (below) of the tower against the cloudy blue-grey sky.

Partial closeup view of the top of the Astoria Column

I can recommend a visit to the tower if you are in the area. There is a small gift shop and I am sure when the skies are bluer and brighter, the views will be even better.

Moody sky and visitor at the Astoria Column

Here is a short paragraph from the Astoria Column Website Organization’s webpage:

“Standing above the city–600 feet above sea level to be exact–the Astoria Column unleashes an unrivaled view of Young’s Bay, the Coast Range, the mighty Columbia River, and in the distance—the Pacific Ocean. Its light shines each night as a silent testament to the pride, fortitude, and resolve of the people who settled the Pacific Northwest, and to those who live here today.”

This was just a small portion of our day exploring Astoria. JBRish.com will soon have more stories about Astoria and other adventures in Oregon.


Read previous posts about our adventures hiking and exploring in Oregon:


Read more Hiking and Exploration posts HERE


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©Jeffrey B. Ross – 2017 – JBRish.com

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