55 Foot Keelboat 152 Foot M/V Sea Bird

Daily Itinerary

The Willamette and the Lower Columbia

Eastern Washington's Wine Country

Clarkston and Hells Canyon

Palouse River

Columbia River Gorge

Astoria

Back to Portland

Saturday, October 5 - Astoria

Saturday morning, we docked at Astoria, Oregon and went ashore for the day. The first stop was the Columbia River Maritime Museum, which was excellent. The guide described developments in navigation and shipping. Buses then took us to Fort Clatsop National Memorial, a replica of the log fort built by the Lewis and Clark expedition in the winter of 1805.

Named for the Clatsops, a friendly local American Indian tribe, the fort also has trails to the canoe landing and replicas of the dugout canoes used by the explorers. Our weather was mild and partly sunny - totally unlike the constant rain and windy conditions experienced by the Corps of Discovery. When we returned and had our lunch, some of us walked into town, others took a bus trip to an Oregon beach, while others (such as ourselves) spent the afternoon relaxing on the ship and packing for tomorrow's departure in Portland. We were watching the accumulation of gulls on the posts near the dock, and concluded that the tide was rapidly receding

Before heading back to Portland, the ship left the dock and headed toward the Ocean and the Columbia River Bar, near Cape Disappointment. The ebbing tide, combined with the river's current, leaned the channel markers over noticeably and boosted the ship's speed to nearly 20 miles per hour instead of its normal 12. We enjoyed several sightings of wild waterfowl, including both white and brown Pelicans and one Bald Eagle.

Before turning around, the captain slowed the ship to match the current. When it made the turn to go back upstream, the ship rolled sharply and provided the passengers on the deck quite a ride. The bartender also showed how experienced he is. He was making hot cider for all the passengers who were out on the windy deck, and he was quick enough to pick up the tray full of cups he was preparing at the bar and balance the tray so none spilled.

During the night, we proceeded upstream back to Portland, docking at the RiverPlace Hotel where the trip began.

Related Links

Driving from Seattle to Portland and back

Tour of Portland

Lindblad Log

Harry Fritz on Lewis and Clark

River Basin Map

Columbia Basin Hydroelectric Projects

The Batterman's Web Site