Re: Tillamook Dunes, OR
Been there more times that I can count. The Sand Lake dunes area is an OK place to go ride. It shaves about 2 hours drive off for me (from Fed. Way) instead of going to Florence or Coos Bay.
Directions: Take I-5 South to Oregon...Exit 302B, west to Beaverton, drive west on Hwy 26 until you reach the turn-off for Hwy 6 to Tillamook. Follow that about 73 miles to Tillamook, you'll crest over the Pacific Range crest and follow the Wilson river down what seems to be the longest and curviest road ever know to Man. In Tillamook turn left at the Texaco, which will be Hwy 101 South, go out of town past the Les Schwab, drive about 9 miles and you'll see the signs the for the Sand Lake area, turn right. Drive slow it's a narrow bumpy road, follow that to a 3 way intersection, turn left, follow that about 2 miles to the Sand Lake Grocery and BP ( a note about that in a minute), turn right(again VERY bumpy), you'll follow that to the end. There's a 90 deg corner to the right just before the camping areas(you know you're getting close), there's 3 areas to stay, the campground is closed this time of year. There's two "parking" lot areas that are first come first serve find whatever spot that you can. I prefer the first one, less wind. The other is OK, but more exposed, but nearer and directly next to the sand. OK, I got ya there.
Now, the area is kinda small, really only two "bowls"/hills, lots of idiot holes to climb out of in the tree line and beach access is typically easy. Busy weekends are not uncommon. The big three holidays require pre-registering for passes to prevent over-crowding.
Back to the store. The couple that owns and operates it with their family are plain good people. Forrest is the man. He has just about every part that you would ever need to repair your bike with. Most importantly he doesn't mark his parts way up. Usually I buy parts there to avoid having to pay sales tax, and he always has what I need in OEM parts for the 250R's.
I enjoy going to Sand Lake because it's close, not farting around too much we can get there in just about 4 hours.(I refuse to ride in the mountain ash at Moses Lake so that's outta the question). Also, if I'm trying out a new set-up and break something, Forrest is likely to have it. I'd reccomend going, at least once, some people love it (us) while others will rather drive another 2 hours to get to Florence.....me I'll take Sand Lake for regular weekends and Coos Bay for the long ones.