Serendipity! We ran across a book called Oregon Coast Quests in a random bookshop in Lincoln City, and were immediately hooked.
This is part of our 100 Things in 2016 challenge. Here’s the full list.
Each of the quests is a scavenger hunt; you follow the clues and discover letters that go into boxes to spell a word or phrase, which then forms the final clue. In the end, you’re led to a cleverly hidden tupperware box which contains a log book and a stamp kit, so you can fill up the passport page in the back of the book.
If you’ve ever been geocaching, you’ll notice some similarities here, but the difficulty level is carefully calibrated for kids. Lucy is challenged (but not frustrated) by these puzzles, and she loves doing them. Our first day turned from a bored-face walk around town to her excitedly running ahead to find the next clue, telling us to hurry up.
We found the book at Bob’s Beach Books, bought it, walked outside, and immediately started our first quest in and around the Oceanlake district. True fact: Oceanlake used to be its own town before 1965.
Actually at the trailhead for Cascade Head, this one was more challenging, both physically and in terms of finding clues.
We wandered all over, and circumnavigated the lake (one of Becky’s favorite things!) in order to finally find the box.
Taft Pioneer Cemetery
We did this one on a 40° day in December, and it was a much different experience than the others. Still, we learned a lot of things about this town.
Another lovely day in December. This quest took us on a tour of the watershed, starting at the top of the hill where Taft Elementary sits, and ending with the runoff draining into the creek. Lucy even made a feline friend!