Freedom and Liberty

Freedom and Liberty
I travel in Freedom but sleep in the security of Liberty (not only on the road, but in this amazing country of ours)

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Astoria Column and Fort Clatsop

Location: Fort Stevens State Park (el. 25 ft); Hammond, Oregon

(click pictures to enlarge)
(all pictures taken with Nokia Lumia 929 Cell Phone)

Yesterday was the last day for a lot of exploration. I visited the Astoria Column. It is a 125 foot high concrete column built on the top of a high hill with images of famous events from this area wrapped around its outside. It resembles Trajans Column in Rome, Italy. I saw Trajans Column back in the 70's, and although it is 2,000 years older, the carved images on it are much more impressive. The Astoria Column is hollow with a spiral staircase going to an observation platform at the top. Think of it as a big concrete pipe standing on its end. There are 164 steps inside. Fortunately, there were a few landing platforms where I could stop and think, meet people, count my money, wind my watch, catch my breath. Lots of people were stopping because of getting dizzy after climbing so many spiral stairs. Once you get to the top, the view is very good and I'm guessing it's close to a 35 to 40 miles view in all directions with the mountains at an even greater distance.
Astoria Column. You enter through the door at the base

An example of the scenes depicted around the perimeter of the column.

A view of the Columbia River. Those ocean going ships look to be the same ones that I took a picture of a couple of days ago. Must be a long waiting line. 

Astoria sits on a peninsula with the Columbia River to the right, Youngs Bay on the left and the Pacific Ocean in the distant middle. The bridge on the right goes to Washington State. I crossed it and posted about it the other day. The bridge on the left goes to the coast and my campground. 

This is looking up Youngs Bay to the rivers that feed it. At low tide, lots of the bay is a "mud flat".

I found this bench next to the gift shop. There are too many people around for much deep thinking, so it is more for resting and looking. 
The "Streets of Astoria" leading downhill after leaving the column. Low gear all the way.

On the way back to the campground, I stopped at Fort Clatsop. It is the camp that Lewis and Clark built to make it through the winter before returning east. I don't know if I'm getting jaded to some of this stuff, but the camp only slightly interested me. Maybe it was because I read so much about it before seeing it. Either way, it was worth seeing. Notice in the picture the moss growing on the roof of the fort. That happens a lot around here. It is constant proof that the "rolling stone gathers no moss". But around here, that stone doesn't have to stop look before the moss starts growing on it. I'll be glad to get Liberty out in the sunlight and hopefully the next campsite is more in the open. Everything stays damp under these trees. 
Replica of Fort Clatsop, named after the local Indian tribe.

This is a copy of Clark's map from 1810. The detail is remarkable. He was an excellent mapmaker and navigator.

Benches cut from a single log. I was surprised at how comfortable they were to sit.

The moss beginning to cover the roof of the fort. 

Today is prep day to move tomorrow. I'll be moving about 30 miles to the east of Portland along the Columbia River. Tonight will be the last time I see the Pacific Ocean for a while. I'll miss it.

Ya'll take care of each other. I'll Cya down the road.


  1. I have enjoyed reading about your adventures. The pictures have been excellent. Are you enjoying your travels or does it seem like a lot of work to you?

    1. Hey Don,
      It is definitely not work. I really like traveling around seeing new things.

  2. Enjoyed reading about Astoria and seeing all the sights I loved so much when I lived there. Where will you be staying East of Portland? Fairview RV Park by any chance?

    1. Hello Betty, I'm glad I could spark some memories for you. I will be going to Ainsworth State Park. I plan to see the river gorge, Bonneville dam and some waterfalls