After we filled the car's gas tank we continued our journey in Oregon on US Highway 101. We had planned to spend the night at Coos Bay on the Oregon coast. There were very few cars on the road at this time of night and we arrived at Coos Bay around 9 pm where we checked in at another Motel 6.

As its name implies, the town of Coos Bay is surrounded by a beautiful bay, lush emeral forests and the mighty Pacific Ocean, and the next morning we saw some of these sights but really didn't stop for long periods, except for the brief visit to the Vistors Center at North Bend which is just outside Coos Bay, to get maps and directions. We were in a hurry to get to our friend's house in Corvallis where they had invited us to spend the night. However, after about half an hour's drive from Coos Bay we came to a place called Winchester Bay which is listed as a 'vacationer's paradise' in the tourist brochures, and boasts of sandy beaches, abundant wildlife, lakes and fishing among others. The area looked pretty enough with its sand dunes, but here again, we didn't stick around for long.

We were still on Highway 101 and crossed a big drawbridge to enter a town called Florence, which of course does not have the same characteristics as its namesake city in Italy. Nevertheless, we saw a restaurant there named, 'Little Brown Hen' and parked there to have lunch. The food there was good and the prices reasonable. However, we didn't see any little brown hens inside the restaurant, hahaha! Afterwards, we drove non-stop until we reached our friends' house in Corvallis. We had some difficulties finding it at first, but after a few phone calls we managed to find it. Our friends Bob and Phyllis welcomed us with open arms. That evening they were going to take us out for dinner, but the snacks and drinks that Phyllis had prepared for us in their home filled us up so much, and as I was rather tired from the long drive I went to bed early.

Bob and Phyllis wanted us to stay longer at their place, but I didn't want to impose on their hospitality, so we left Corvallis the next morning intending to switch over to Interstate Highway 5, just before the city of Eugene. Once on I-5, we made a stop for lunch at another small town called Roseburg. This time it was just at an ever present McDonald's, and not one like the one with the cute name in Florence. Sometime in the afternoon we made another stop at Sunny Valley near Grant's Pass in southern Oregon. There we saw the Applegate Wagon Trail which offered a glimpse of the colorful history of the pioneer settlers coming in their covered wagons, the discovery of gold, the impact of the stagecoach, and the building of the railroad. We also came across the historical covered bridge near the museum.

Still on Interstate 5 we managed to cross the Oregon border back into California before dark, and made a brief stop at the vista point near Mount Shasta to take in the scenery before heading towards the town of Red Bluff, where we spent the night at yet another Motel 6. The next morning we wanted to see the salmon in the Sacramento River's east bank as they work their way through the fish traps, so went to the Recreational Park which was not far from Motel 6. We stood and waited at a boat launching ramp, but did not see any salmon at all as the season had just finished in August. A lot of picnic sites, camping areas, boating facilities, but no salmon!

The prevous day I had called my aunt who lives in Sacramento, the capital of California state. She invited me to visit her in Sacramento, so from Red Bluff we went there. She came to pick me up at a truck stop outside town, and took me to an Indian restaurant for lunch while my friend stayed behind to meet her own friend in Sacramento. Afterwards, we went to visit Lodi. (of which a separate blog is posted here on IPERNITY already)

We were nearing the end of our road trip, and it had been a pleasant journey. The weather was good all along, our rental car ran smoothly, and we didn't encounter any trouble at all on the roads. We could have made it back to my daughter's house in Santa Clarita that night, but decided to make a last night stop at a Super 8 Motel in Santa Nella, a small town just off Interstate 5. There was nothing much to see or do there so the next morning we re-packed our bags one final time, and drove non-stop to Santa Clarita arriving there in the early afternoon of September 15th.