Chasing Tides at Hug Point
Spring is in full swing here in Portland, and so it seems that 90 degree days are here to stay. For this reason, Nick and I decided we'd take our adventure day to the breezy Oregon Coast and escape the heat. We tend to take a very lax approach to our adventures. Instead of making plans, we tend to go wherever the wind (and our stomachs) take us. We decided we'd spend our day in the Cannon Beach area and see what hidden gems were in store for us. But first, food.
We spent not even 5 minutes looking for a place to grab a bite before we landed in Bill's Tavern, a busy little brew pub in the heart of downtown Cannon Beach. It was the second place we walked past and after a quick peruse of the menu to make sure I could actually eat there since I don't eat meat, we decided to give it a try. Almost every table was full, so how bad could it be, right? I got a hummus plate and Nick got a veggie burrito that was probably bigger than my head. All in all? Pretty darn good, but don't expect to be in and out of there in a jiffy. Honestly, don't expect it anywhere in the northwest. They really take 'slow living' to a whole new level 'round these parts.
After successfully filling ourselves to the brim with beer and carbs, we headed to the beach to relax and regroup from our hectic workweeks. There's something particularly calming about the sound of the ocean waves. At times, it felt like we were in a soundless vacuum where nothing existed but the sea. At other times, there were laughing children and the pitter patter of dog paws on the sand. It was exactly what we needed before we got back on our feet and explored the coast.
Last time we visited the coast, I told Nick I wanted to take him to Hug Point, since he hadn't been before. Hug Point is one of my favorite spots on the coast so far, and for good reason. If you go during low tide — which, for the record, we didn't — there are lots of hidden gems to explore. The only reason I know it exists is actually because when my parents visited last September, my dad found a post online about it and wanted to go see the caves. This beach is located a just few miles south of Cannon Beach right off U.S. 101. It's well marked, so if you're keeping your eyes peeled, you can't miss the signs for it.
Depending on the time of the tides, it can be pretty packed, especially on weekends. If you're like me and prefer to visit places when they aren't swarming with humans, I'd recommend going in the morning on a weekday. But most importantly, make sure you go within around an hour of low tide or else it's a lot more difficult to explore and you'll risk being stranded on the other side of the point. Nick and I were about 3 hours early for low tide but went into it hoping for the best. We got stranded on a couple of rocks in an attempt to keep our shoes dry which, might I add, lasted maybe 30 minutes before I sprinted through a giant puddle.
The first point you can walk around is called Adair Point. (It's the point I was standing on top of when I took the above photo.) It takes you to a slightly secluded beach area featuring a waterfall and a couple of coastal caves. You can climb up the waterfall and explore Falls Creek if you're feeling it, though the trail doesn't take you very far unless you're trying to climb back up to the parking area. Behind the second point is a huge cave you can walk right into. If you continue walking north along the coast, you can walk around Hug Point and access the area that eventually becomes Arcadia Beach.
This place is a playground for those of you who love climbing on things and exploring nature. Nick and I spent hours running around and laughing like kids, avoiding the ocean waves, getting stranded on rocks, and climbing on almost anything we could find. It was the kind of day that makes me wonder why adults don't play more. (Let's be real, when I go on adventures, that's basically what I'm doing.) It's so freeing and therapeutic to just let loose, let all of your stresses and worries fade to the wayside, and go where the wind takes you. Well, within reason.
Yearning for more days as carefree as this one was. Until next time.