Travel & Tours

Spring Break on the Oregon Coast: Disaster or Adventure?

A body of water with a mountain in the background

We packed our Jayflight trailer, dreaming of an idyllic week filled with sand, surf, tide pools, and steaming pots of succulent Dungeness crab. The kids brought their bikes and outdoor games, and I packed my favorite camp chair. Spring Break was going to rock!

I’m not sure why native Oregonians like my husband Eric and me didn’t plan for rain. On the Oregon coast. In mid-March. But we didn’t. The girls brought their favorite UPF-blocking bikinis and sun hats, but weatherproof rain gear apparently wasn’t on their radar, or mine.

It’s not like we were totally unprepared-I had packed the girls’ Bogs rain boots for clamming and tide pool exploring. I’d even doubled the amount of clothing I thought they’d need, but it wasn’t enough.

As soon as we pulled into Oceanside RV Park, Maya made a beeline for the beach before changing into her wetsuit and came back soaked to the bone, dripping salt water and sand. “I tripped,” she explained. One set of warm clothes down…

Then big sister Elise, not believing me that the water was only about 40 degrees, dipped her stylish Mary Jane-style shoes into it. The shoes she’d insisted were “just for the car ride, Mom.” The dirty clothes pile was growing fast.

Our friends arrived soon after, and so did the inclement weather. It rained non-stop. Wind gusts blew the kids over when they tried to play outside, and then their stir-crazy moms kicked them out of tents and trailers for tracking in sand and muck. (The men were attempting to salvage the trip by harvesting pots of crab elsewhere.) Maya blew through four pairs of socks in one day, and we discovered just how much food bored children can consume. And how much they’ll fight when forced into close quarters.

Oh, and did I mention that the dog ate something disagreeable and made a huge mess in the trailer? I guess next time she whines incessantly at the door at 4 a.m., “Shut up!” won’t be our response.

But, thanks to our adventurous and adaptable kids, the trip wasn’t a bust. They rode bikes in the rain and loaned each other clothes, making the best of it. Elise even wrote a funny story about it for school. She did tell me to “pack more socks next time.” I will.

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