Because we were so close to Oregon Caves, we are in the Park by 10:30 and are signed up for one of the first tours through the Caves. The only way to get inside the cave (despite the name, the main cave is a single system) is to go on a tour and tickets are only available at the Park, on a first-come, first-served basis.
Big Dog is worried about having to pee while on the tour and has a little plastic bottle hidden in his pocket. If he needs to use it, at least it will be dark enough!
Soon, we are going in, with the ranger and a couple dozen other people. It is chilly!
While not at the scale of the caves at Carlsbad, this one has many beautiful highlights, too. Like a river that runs through the cave. It’s called River Styx, appropriately enough.
It’s nice to get back to the warm outside! We take a stroll through the Chateau, a six-story hotel built in a rustic, woodland style. There’s a little stream running right through it, too!
“Wow, we were really lucky,” I comment. “Being in that campground last night and getting to the Caves early enough.”
On the way back down we pass car after car, all heading to the Caves.
199 goes back to the California Coast, through the Smith River National Recreation Area, part of the Six Rivers National Forest. Yes, this is River Country!
The trees start changing – you begin to see redwoods – and the temps start dropping as you approach Cresent City.
It’s cool and foggy. We are back on the coast!
The road from Crescent City to Klamath is new to me and Sprockets, but the landscape is familiar. Redwoods, ocean, grey skies.
There’s an overlook at Klamath where we can see the mouth of the Klamath. The fogginess brings with it a unique quiet, as well as the melancholy of a roadtrip’s end.