It took Lewis & Clark with the Corps of discovery, 2 years, 4 months and 10 days to reach the Pacific Ocean. Our Astoria Oregon motorcycle trip….. took us about 5 hours and I thought WE made a lot of stops.
Astoria is really famous because of Lewis and Clark, and the Corps of Discovery. They arrived in November 1805, after spending six nights on the Washington side of the Columbia River in a place Capt. William Clark named, “that dismal nitch.”
The average rainfall in Astoria in November is over 11 inches, and the record November rainfall is almost 3 feet; it rains a lot. The average annual rainfall in Astoria is 67 inches, but in one record year 51 inches fell just in the month of December.
I tell you that not to discourage you from visiting Astoria, for we find it to be a beautiful place, but choosing your travel times wisely will make a difference. We made this trip in early August and had beautiful weather every day. More about the Lewis & Clark National Historical Park later……..
Astoria began as Fort Astoria when John Jacob Astor’s Pacific Fur Trading company established the first permanent settlement on the West coast in 1811. Astoria grew on the fur trade, shipping and fishing, before transitioning into a tourism based economy. Astoria reborn as a tourist destination has risen so well it even ranks as a port of call for cruise ships.
The most noticeable landmark is the famed Astoria Column, one of the must see spots in town. It is 125 feet tall, but sitting on the hill it is 600 feet above sea level and offers outstanding views of the city.
We plugged it into the gps and off we went, right into a road closed barricade, which I of course went around……until we reached the point at which the road was really closed. OK, they win, it was impassable blocked by excavators that had dug the road completely out.
Reroute to the other side of the hill and another road closed sign…..WTH it’s looking like you can get within a few blocks but no more. We stopped and called the visitors center only to find it’s closed for renovation until September.