By Brian Cameron
With the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad gearing up for the 2017 on-season it was time to dust off the McCloud RR 25 train engine, hook it up to the passenger cars and head out on the rails in an invitation-only trip northbound to the Nehalem Bay Winery.
With esteemed guests and members of various county and civil organizations and departments OCSR treated everyone to a crawl up the coastline from Rockaway Beach to the Wheeler winery and back again.
“This was a chance for us at OCSR to get things in gear for the summer and showcase our beloved McCloud RR #25,” said OCSR General Manager Jessica Jung. “We decided it would be a great gesture to offer a ride for invited guests in the community.”
With notable guests like Tillamook City Manager Paul Wyntergreen, Mayor of Tillamook Suzanne Weber, Visit Tillamook Coast Director Nan Devlin, Port of Tillamook Bay General Manager Michele Bradley, Garibaldi Commissioner Val Folkema, Mayor of Bay City Shaena Peterson, Denny Pastega of the Blue Heron French Cheese Company were among a number of others who all showed up in Rockaway Beach to take OCSR up on the offer to board the train for a rare trip north through Rockaway, Nedonna Beach, Brighton, Wheeler, Mohler and back.
Refreshments of beer and wine were provided as well as soda and juice for the kids, hors d’oeuvres of brie, cheddar, fruits and veggies were also on hand to make the trip that much more enjoyable.
“I mean how often can you board a train at the beach and have a cold one, all while just taking in the onset of what looks to be a great tourist season,” said Michele Bradley, POTB General Manager.
The trip north from Rockaway acted as the season’s first official jaunt that direction instead of its tried and true route to Garibaldi and back which brings visitors on a sightseeing trip of one of the most scenic sections of the Tillamook coastline.
This time the guests got to see things in a North County persepective with picturesque views of Nehalem Bay, the Pacific Ocean and the beginning of the “Tri-village” area.
One youngster onboard was elated to be on a train for the first time in his entire life but wasn’t exactly verbose when asked of his experience.
“It was pretty cool,” said 12 year old Corey Collinsworth of Tillamook.
“I thought it was a lot of fun.”