Over Memorial Day weekend, we stayed at Fort Stevens State Park. It was an active US base for 84 years, from the Civil War through WWII, where troops protected the mouth of the mighty Columbia river from infiltration by enemy forces. This coastal defense site was fired upon by a Japanese sub in 1942!
Amid miles of bike trails were the aging cannons and other rusting artillery now on display. We spent the weekend in and among heavy guns, lush waterways, and ocean spray.
Bonus: remnants of a 1906 shipwreck – the Peter Iredale. This was apparently irresistible for tourists as we saw countless people climbing on and around its remains.
Nonbonus: mosquitoes. So many mosquitoes. More mosquitoes than air. We know from mosquitos. We’ve hiked through sultry summertime forests in New England where it’s mosquito central. We’ve climbed high, skirting Colorado’s glacial lakes where the bugfests resembled some kind of insect Carnivale. These experiences pale in comparison to the hordes at Fort Stevens. These were more substantial, more aggressive, and just more. When we drove away, dogged clouds of those horrible bloodsuckers literally chased us out. Yikes!
But other than nearly losing our entire blood supply to the proboscid pestilence, we had a lovely time.