June 30, 2016

Oregon Coast

For a couple months, I had been wanting to plan a road trip to the Oregon Coast. Nicole and I kept talking about going and how awesome it would be if we went. We committed; planned a route, and booked accommodations in five hours that afternoon. Two days later we headed out for the coast; started on the road at 5 in the morning to make our long trek to Portland.

One thing I loved about the vibe of Nicole and I on our trip, was that except for the few views we shared through Snapchat, we focused mostly on making the photos on the go, and capturing the authenticity of the trip and moment, rather than get the perfect shot to be able to share on Instagram for the instant gratification. Likes or comments on a photo that we thought was stellar wasn't going to make our trip better at all. Our road trip to Oregon was full of experiences which let us learn and will continue to help us grow.

I loved having a travel partner who seemed to be as passionate of photography as I am. From rallying one night to make some pictures of the galaxy on the beach, to turning around from walking to the car and staying on the beach for another hour to enjoy the sea breeze and play with our cameras, Nicole was such a great friend who has an artistic eye that enjoyed everything we came in contact with.

It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see.
Henry David Thoreau

Before we stopped in Portland where we would spend the night, we arrived at the Oneonta Gorge and walked up to Multnomah Falls. We wanted to hike up the canyon at Oneonta to the waterfall, where you have to slosh through chest deep water, but since it was rainy and cold, we decided to push that to the end of the trip... and we're so glad we did.

Our plan was to watch hot air balloons at the Tigard Festival, but that morning was too windy (or something) for them to launch. So this was the most we got to see of the hot air balloons, but hey, since we were up (5:45am they were supposed to launch), we made our way to the coast early and got some extra time out there.  

The first views of the coast and we literally could not stop smiling.

Still smiling at Rockaway Beach!

As we were driving along the coast, there were so many places to turn out or there would be roads to take you to trailheads. After setting up our tent at our campsite, we decided to head back to Cape Kiwanda because we couldn't get enough of it. On the way, we pulled into one of the trailheads and hiked about 20 minutes to get a view (pictured above). Looking out to the ocean was humbling. It's massive size, roaring waves, and in-comprehensive strength remind you of how small you actually are.

I photographed Nicole's senior portraits in the afternoon and grabbed dinner. We then sought out for more portraits at golden hour and sunset. (Nicole's portraits will be in the next blog post.)

While on the road, it's so important to find times like these to lay down, stretch out, and eat cake to remind yourself that you are exactly where you need to be and exactly who you need to be with. Shoutout to Nicole for always being on the same page throughout the trip!

PRO TIP: When you forget a cup for watercoloring, drink a juice box and then open it up. Just add salt water ;)

BACKPACK: Parkland || TRAVEL KIT: Parkland || TOWEL: Sand Cloud (sold out, similar here)

We had packed up our stuff and were heading back to the car. Nicole and I turned around and looked at each other and we both knew we wanted to stay longer for sunset. We did just that. Not having our days totally outlined gave us a ton of free time which let us do exactly what we felt we needed to do. One thing which was nice was knowing where we would be sleeping at night, and having a tent set up let us have a sense of home that a Prius could not provide for us. ;)

It was close to midnight and Nicole and I were both fading in the tent, but we decided since we were on the coast and it was our last night, we wanted to go back out on the beach to try for some long exposures of the stars. Once again, when we were out on the beach, we got stoked at the crazy amount of stars lighting up the sky. 

After we shot the photo below, our guts told us it was time to go. The experience of being out on the coast at night reminded us that we were out there alone, pretty far from home. We slept in the car that night, but sometimes you just gotta do what you feel is right. We had a lucky shooting star watching over us that night and we are so excited and proud to have gotten this shot.

A good photographer must love life more than he does photography.
Joel Strasser

xo, Hallie

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