Road Trip Stop #2: Gold Beach, OR

Three guesses on why this place is called “Turtle Rock”

We spent 4.5 days and 4 nights at Turtle Rock RV Resort in Gold Beach, Oregon.

Hi. This place has private decks with hot tubs on them. That’s all. That’s the sell. Go book a spot now. They even have cottages/cabins in case you don’t have a trailer! There was a short walk over to the beach directly from the RV park. A good and bad thing is that you still get excellent cell service here. Since I needed to work, that was a big plus for me but if you’re looking for ~off the grid~, this is not your place. What you will get is super friendly staff, a brewery across the street (fantastic beers – we got a pack of their lager), clean facilities, and beautiful views of the ocean. There’s a good amount of things to do in Gold Beach, so we explored the city more than we did at our first stop.

The rain finally stopped on moving day. When we pulled up to our private deck, the sun was shining down, welcoming us to our new (temporary) home. It was very short lived… that night, the rain picked back up. I love the rain. When I can’t sleep, I’ll turn on rain sounds. It’s my favorite natural sound. But… I am very over it. It sounded like we got a million inches of rain that night. When we woke up, we realized why it was so loud… It wasn’t rain, it was hail.

After the hail stopped, the drizzling started and we got a move on. I found Gold Beach Books online. They are a vintage bookstore with a cafe inside. Sold. I browsed the old (“vintage”) books, in search of a cool version of Alice in Wonderland. I have a few versions of Alice and I’m always looking to find more. My Alice love started a little different than most people’s… Sure, I liked Disney’s Alice in Wonderland, along with many other versions. But my real obsession started in around 2002, when I stumbled across a video game called American McGee’s Alice. Basically, the twisted version of Alice in Wonderland (10/10 recommend this game and the following sequel). Since then, I’ve loved Alice in Wonderland. Bad news: They didn’t have an Alice but it was still so fun looking around. We stopped in the cafe for a Mexican Mocha (SO GOOD) and some pastries (ALSO SO GOOD). The staff was so kind and their vibes filled every corner of the store. Even if you’re not a book fan, I’d check this place out, even if it’s just to soak up some good vibes.

My favorite

We continued around town, where we stumbled across a sign for a cemetery (I swear I didn’t even look it up guys, it found me). I want to take a moment to talk about cemeteries. As far as I remember, I’ve always visited cemeteries. It started when I was a kid, going to Hawaii for the first time to see my family. My grandfather (and now grandmother) is buried there and he passed when I was young. That’s the first cemetery I remember going to. The next cemetery I visited was the many cemeteries in Salem, MA (another family trip to visit more family). From then on, it was just natural. Visit a place, visit a cemetery. Cemeteries have never creeped me out. I find an intense calm feeling when I’m in a cemetery. I almost always traveled with my mom or my cousin – two people who also love cemeteries (I think that my cousin and I saw more graves than people on our New Orleans trip). When Jacob and I started dating, I was really scared to bring up visiting cemeteries on our travels. I should have known better! He loved it and now it’s just a thing we research. Going somewhere? Is there a cemetery? Cool. In fact, I have a post about some of my favorite cemeteries I’ve been to AND I have a ton of cemetery photography on my photography page. Jacob has taken some of my favorite pictures of me in cemeteries and playfully refers to me as his “Cemetery Siren”. I’ll happily take it.

This cemetery was tiny, tucked away next to a church (see mom, I went to church!), and contained a lot of people with the same last names. There was also a beautiful view of the beach. If I wasn’t so cold, I could have stayed there longer, just to relax.

After our cemetery adventure, we drove over to The Christmas Shoppe because I saw a sign for a store that is ALL CHRISTMAS ALL THE TIME?! Sign me up. It was cute and a great place to buy ornaments and gifts (which we did). Across the way is a cute gift shop with a ton of stuff you don’t need but you can’t live without. Story of my life.

Our next adventure took us to the Natural Bridges Viewpoint – right off the highway. So far, every stranger we’ve encountered in Oregon has been so kind! Sidney got ALL the pets while running far away this viewpoint (is my dog also scared of heights?!). There was a path (???? was there) next to the viewpoint so we took it until… we couldn’t anymore. Don’t blame me, I just followed Sidney.

Soon after that, I discovered the Rogue River – Siskiyou National Forest. This was easily one of my best finds. As I stated previously, finding dog friendly hiking trails is a pain and a half. But in this case, it was a blessing. We found The Francis Shrader Old Growth Trail. Along this 0.8 mile loop, there’s 5 bridges (with water gushing under it – as a Bay Area native, this is unheard of) and 13 stops along the way to learn about the trees in this forest. At the beginning (and end) of the hike, there’s a small pamphlet that you can take along the path with you. We got to learn about how trees populate after fires, that dead trees melting into the Earth is super important, and so much more. There was just a feel on that trail that made my heart sing. We tried to find another trail in the forest but failed… Maybe? We found a really cool bridge and a trail that absolutely was not a trail at all but someone once made it a trail. This ended on large rocks by the river. I thought my day was already amazing but this accidental find made it a million times better. While down there, we saw some cars parked where we wanted to go… So we got in our car and off roaded our butts down to the part of the river side that was flat. That was our lunch view for the day. No complaints here. Like none. I can’t complain. I can’t believe this is my life. How am I possibly this lucky?

That was our final day in Gold Beach. And what a final day it was. It’s been amazing just falling into nature during this trip. Whims will carry me throughout the day, fill up my heart and soul, and give me some of the best breathable moments I’ve ever experienced. I’ve slowed down, reminded myself “not my circus, not my monkeys”, read so many books (I only brought 8 and I’m already half way through), gotten to know Jacob better (thanks to this game I bought a while ago and totally recommend -this version at least), taken Sidney to smells so many new things, and just genuinely loved waking up in the morning.

I can’t wait to see what’s next.

Stay tuned

3 thoughts on “Road Trip Stop #2: Gold Beach, OR

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