Unless you’ve got wings or gills, you’ll approach the bnb via pavement, in a car, truck or atop a motorcycle.
From the north you’ll be driving south on US Hwy 101 through a number of drop-dead gorgeous beach towns that pepper the Oregon coast. And yes, there a few not-so-special-looking towns, too.
The gems include Florence, Depoe Bay, Manzanita, Yachats, and Bandon. Of special beauty is the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area near Reedsport and the Cape Perpetua Southeast Marine Protected Area south of Yachats.
Closer to the California border is the coast-hugging Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor. Referred to as a “linear” park, this narrow, 12-mile swath of protected coastal land is easily accessible from the 101 with over a dozen parking areas from which to park and explore, or just eyeball, the rocky coast. A 27-mile trail winds its way along the length of the park and for a fun adventure can be walked in increments here and there.
From the east, the approach to Hiouchi is along Hwy 199. You’ll start to feel a sense of isolation and retreat from the real world as you leave the sprawl of strip malls behind in Grants Pass (where Interstate 5 and 199 meet). Notwithstanding the proliferation of fast-food outlets and a few big box stores on 199, a parallel route through old town Grants Pass (Hwy 99) has tons of charm with a reclaimed gold-rush era neighborhood as well as a number of funky coffee shops and bakeries that never got the memo to modernize or get hip. My favorite pit stop in Grants Pass is The Kitchen Company, a packed emporium of sophisticated cooking supplies and kitchen gadgets. Well worth a look.
Traveling west, 199 passes through mostly rural America. Options to buy local honey or produce beckon. There are broken down trailers to ogle. Horses with bent necks, contentedly eating grass. There’s a lumber mill along the way. Cave Junction is the last town you’ll pass through before Hiouchi so you’ll want to stock up on supplies if you need any last-minute goodies.
Our favorite fruit and vegetable stand is just east of Cave Junction. Sweet Cron. A spot that is plunked down in an expanse of land on your left. Well worth a stop during the warmer months. Peppers, tomatoes, corn, cucumbers, peas and apples might be among the produce you’ll find in the farm house-turned-selling floor a couple hundred feet in from the highway.
From the south, US Hwy 101 winds its way north out of San Francisco. Once you shed the suburban cacophony of Marin County it’s miles and miles of vineyards, which then morph to hillsides and vast expanses of trees, mostly fir, that start to predominate north of Willits and seem only to get thicker and more dense as you head further and further north.
Possible stopping off points include Willits, with cheap gas and a Safeway store for snacks or more robust supplies, the ganja-infused Garberville further north (worth a stop for a stretch and a coffee at the Getti Up drive-thru coffee kiosk on the main drag or a burrito at Nacho Mama next to the Chevron station).
From Garberville I usually push through to Eureka for more coffee and two decent natural foods markets, Eureka Natural Foods and the North Coast Co-op, both on the 101 (though as you drive north, North Coast is a block away). Either store works if you are aiming to buying healthy snacks or something bigger for your stay at the bnb. North of Eureka it’s just you and the redwoods with the highway occasionally dipping down to the coast. Keep alert for elk on the highway or shoulder as you get north of Trinidad. The presence of wild elk on the road are possible anywhere along the highway through on to Crescent City.
For a spectacular approach to the bnb from the south, opt to take Howland Hill Road through the National Park to Hiouchi. Highway 199 to Hiouchi also goes through the National Park but Howland Hill Road is a lonely dirt road that will blow you away, especially if you’ve never seen the these most-northerly groves of old-growth redwoods.