Recommended Sites: Seatlle to Cannon Beach

Old Jan 12th, 2014, 08:39 AM
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Recommended Sites: Seatlle to Cannon Beach

It will be in August; will have a rental car. Thanks to all who replied on my previous post as to the Four Seasons in Seattle which is where we will stay.

Now, trying to decide what to see between the two locations. We will be staying in Cannon Beach for two nights.

I am wondering about Cape Disappointment and whether or not it is worthwhile stopping. The views look spectacular. Suggestions for stops anywhere else along the way are welcomed.

We will undoubtedly plan on leaving Seattle VERY early in the morning so we can pack as much as possible into this one day southbound.
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Old Jan 12th, 2014, 08:48 AM
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For a very full but terrific day, you could visit Mount St. Helens, then follow the north shore of the Columbia from Longview out to Cape Disappointment, then over the bridge to Astoria and down to Cannon Beach. I think the north shore is fascinating and quite historic, and Cape Disappointment is definitely worth the stop - interpretive center, lighthouses, etc.

The bridge over the mouth of the Columbia is awesome and worth taking this route on its own, IMO.
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Old Jan 12th, 2014, 09:07 AM
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Gardyloo, thanks. Hadn't thought of Mount St. Helens but will research that.
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Old Jan 12th, 2014, 09:19 AM
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Just realized I spelled Seattle incorrectly in my title..DUH! I assume you mean we should follow Washington State Route 4 from Longview, is that correct?
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Old Jan 12th, 2014, 11:04 AM
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I assume you mean we should follow Washington State Route 4 from Longview, is that correct?

Yes, I-5 to SR 505/504 to Johnston Ridge Observatory, then out on SR 504 to I-5, then SR4 out to the bridge, then 101 to Ilwaco and Cape Disappointment.

Allow 3 hours to Johnston Ridge, then 3 more to Ilwaco and one more to Cannon Beach. As I said, it's a full day.
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Old Jan 12th, 2014, 11:12 AM
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I'll be on the run quite early and don't even need coffee to function like a human being with not much time left.
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Old Jan 12th, 2014, 03:28 PM
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Upon reaching exit #49 off of I-5, don't waste your time heading the 50 miles east to Mount St. Helens unless the weather is clear. A cloudy day at the viewpoint sometimes renders the mountain invisible.

Also, If you or anybody you want to impress (whether with you, or not) are/were fans of the Twilight movie series, many of the settings used in the movie are very convenient to see and (take 'selfies' in front of) in the small town of St. Helens, Oregon (including Bella Swan's original home - photograph from the street, as it remains a private residence ).

I can't tell whether your trip is a one-way, or a round-trip, for obviously you'd have to construct quite the maze of roads to cover some of this stuff.
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Old Jan 12th, 2014, 06:34 PM
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Our favorite route to Cape Disappointment from Seattle is 1-5, WA 6, and 101. Only a short stretch of WA 4 is along the Columbia River between Long View and Cape Disappointment.

HTtY
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Old Jan 13th, 2014, 06:37 AM
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I agree with Gardyloo, both are very good places to stop at. Mt St Helens takes a bit of time since Johnston Ridge Observatory is 50 miles from I-5, but there are a couple other visitors centers along that road and places to stop at. Up at JRO, there is a short film (about 12 minutes or so) that is absolute must!

I always love the questions about this as it reminds me of the day the mountain blew and everyone remembers exactly where they were and trying to catch a glimpse of it, lol.

Anyway, the visitors centers will show you the destruction and how things are coming back. It took many years to really see the changes. For so long it just looked so bare. The new growth is exciting to see, IMO.
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Old Jan 13th, 2014, 09:10 AM
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I would highly suggest taking a drive along the Historic Columbia River Gorge Highway just east of Portland. Fabulous views of the Columbia River (from above) and the highlight is Multnomah Falls.

We enjoyed the Maritime Museum in Astoria (very well done) and a climb to the top of Astoria Column (also great views).

I think a stop Ecola State Park (not a campground) for fabulous views of the Pacific is a must. Many photos are taken here as well as filming of movies (Twilight and Kindergarten Cop to name a couple).


There is a small outlet mall in Seaside if you are interested but otherwise the town didn't do much for me. We liked Cannon Beach a lot more.
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Old Jan 13th, 2014, 09:37 AM
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Thanks for ALL these additional comments and suggestions which I will attempt to address in turn.

Northwestmale: thanks for the advice re possibly cloudy weather and viewing the mountain. As to that movie, appreciate the suggestion but we saw only parts of one of the films and I thought the scenery was the most impressive aspect of the whole thing so no worries about picture taking. Our trip is one-way and we will eventually fly back home from Portland.

Happy Trails...thank you. I tend to research routes fairly carefully and I also tend to change my mind at the last minute so who knows? <G>

MMS: The whole Mt. St. Helens thing sounds interesting given the circumstances so thanks very much for those useful details. And finally, Connie, thank you for your recommendations as well. I've followed the "Cannon Beach or..." discussions on this forum for some time now and for good or bad we have made our decision to stay in Cannon Beach. I was even happier when I learned from folks here that I have made the supposed "correct decision" as to which place to stay IN, too, so all seems well at this point.
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Old Jan 13th, 2014, 10:58 AM
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I'm no help with the drive, just stopping by to say I *love* Cannon Beach, all of that stretch of the Oregon coast really.
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Old Jan 13th, 2014, 11:13 AM
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We visited Mt St Helens and were really impressed by it. It brings home the scale of the destruction, and the resilience of nature. Well worth the detour.
We also really enjoyed Ecola State Park.

The PNW is my favourite part of the US so far.
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Old Jan 13th, 2014, 12:03 PM
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I should also mention that plowing through industrial Long View to get to WA 4 is not a pleasant experience.

HTtY
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Old Jan 14th, 2014, 02:04 PM
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thanks for that advice, HTTY
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Old Jan 17th, 2014, 10:04 PM
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Good itinerary.

I'd check the weather that morning and if it is expected to be really cloudy or rainy, perhaps just head on to Cape Disappointment. The weather at the coast often has nothing to do with the weather inland. You would have more time for Astoria, which I have always enjoyed. There's a little trolley car and the old Victorian houses that were in the movie Goonies.

And if it's at all possible and you are staying in Portland afterward, you could potentially drive up from Portland to Mount Saint Helens when it's better to see it. By the way, I speak from experience. It's not that much fun to go if you can't see the mountain at all.
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