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Looking south from Cape Disappointment’s North Head Lighthouse, toward the mouth of the Columbia.

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Cape Disappointment’s North Head Lighthouse, the windiest place in the West (seriously, winds of up to 120 miles per hour have been measured here). Built in 1898, this lighthouse’s beacon can be seen 17 miles out to sea.

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Looking north from North Head Lighthouse, toward Long Beach’s 28-mile-long sandy arm.

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Vickie Cordell (senior editor Kasey Cordell’s mother) pauses for a picture outside the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center. In the distance, the 155-year-old Cape Disappointment Lighthouse guards the mouth of the Columbia River.

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A flock of pelicans takes flight (awkwardly) over the North Jetty at Cape Disappointment.

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On the North Jetty, looking back toward the lighthouse and Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center. From here, you’ll see ships lining up on the horizon like circling planes, all waiting for a bar pilot to guide them through the treacherous mouth of the Columbia (dubbed "The Graveyard of the Pacific").

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Nature plays a giant game of pick-up sticks at Waikiki Beach, near the lighthouse, while kids play in the protected cove.

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Having a Pavlov moment? Us too. The “seafood joe” (sautéed seafood, mushrooms, onions, spinach, garlic, eggs and parmesan on top of sourdough garlic bread) at Nanci & Jimella’s Market and Café in Klipsan Beach ensures a delicious start to any day.

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Well, sort of. At 28 miles, the Long Beach Peninsula offers what is believed to be the world’s longest stretch of drivable beach. That probably would have taken up too much room on the sign, though.

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No food is safe from a chocolate bath at Long Beach’s longstanding sweet shoppe, The Candy Man. Not bacon, Twinkies, potato chips, or even—yes—peanut-butter-stuffed jalapeños. Really. Even weirder? They actually taste good.

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Take some real horsepower to the beach with an hourlong trail ride led by either Back Country Wilderness Outfitters or Skippers Equestrian Center.

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Yet another way to cruise the coast: Vickie Cordell pedals part of the eight-mile-long Discovery Trail, which traces the coast from Long Beach’s 26th Street to Cape Disappointment State Park.

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Willapa Bay oysters on display.

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Looking out across the bay from Oysterville Sea Farms’ deck.

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Historic Oysterville’s 119-year-old church, just one of the dozens of structures on the National Historic Register that have survived more than 100 years.

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Dessert fit for a king… and his entire court: the Guinness cake at the Shelburne Inn.

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From sea to supper: Peruvian mango sea scallops at the Depot Restaurant in Seaview. One-time Portland chef Michael Lalewicz (formerly of Restaurant Toulouse and Jimmy Mak’s) puts gourmet land and seafood on the tables nightly inside this historic train depot.

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