Sunset in Pacific City

Waves of Weather

Our first winter as husband and wife was especially harsh!

The drizzle quit on our wedding day just before we said our vows. Then we were treated to amazing weather during our honeymoon! But the weekend of our wedding party, an icy wind storm threatened to freeze out the festivities.

From that point on, a parade of rain, snow, ice, and wind storms dominated our lives for months. However, it seems like there’s a weekend in February almost every winter when the weather on the Oregon coast teases you with a beautiful spring-like day.

Basket o’ Goodies

And we are prepared for it! Pro-tip: when that weekend hits, stuff whatever food you have in your picnic basket and hit the road!

We round up smoked salmon, white cheddar cheese, crackers, and leftover potato salad, and slap together some sandwiches. Sometimes you don’t have to be fancy, especially when escaping cabin fever.

Something Sparkly

We head back to Lincoln City and try our luck at getting a parking spot. Oh, and at finding their hidden treasure!

Pounding surf, and no glass globes in sight!

During the winter and spring months, local artists hide blown-glass floats and other glass trinkets along the seven mile coastline to attract beachcombing tourists. It’s a big deal they call “Finders Keepers” because you get to keep whatever treasure they’ve hidden!

We have much better luck finding the perfect parking spot than we do finding treasure. Still, we’re thrilled to leave Winter behind, if only for the afternoon. Cold-and-miserable fades away while we stroll the beach taking photos and working up an appetite for our makeshift picnic with a front row view of the waves.

Alas, No Glass, We Pass

Since our search for glass is a bust, we decide to head up the coast to explore the beach at Cape Kiwanda and savor a sunset dinner at Pelican Pub. My mom sent us a gift card as a wedding present, so we’ll make the most of it!

The beach at Cape Kiwanda is packed with beach-goers just as excited as we are about being outdoors mid-winter. Like the Groundhog coming out of his hole to see if winter is just about done, the beach is full of campfires, horseback riders, and people cruising the sand in their rigs. There is quite a festive vibe!

Beachy Keen

The Pelican Pub is a popular destination. The restaurant and brewery are right on the beach with a view of Chief Kiwanda Rock. They have an extensive menu of house-brewed craft beers. In the summer months, you can dine outdoors on their beachfront patio.

We aren’t super hungry, but we have been looking forward to the Pelican Pub for awhile, so we drop in for a cocktail and appetizer. We are shown to a table with a view of the upcoming sunset. We order cocktails and flatbread that wind up matching the evening sky.

My drink is The Sneaker Wave! It’s made with Crater Lake Vodka, rum, triple sec, cranberry, pineapple, and orange juices. Andy orders the Kiwanda Cooler, with Crater Lake vodka, gin, rum, sour mix, cranberry, and lime juice.

We also order an Oregon wild-caught lox flatbread, which Pelican Pub says is homemade flatbread topped with a lemon chive crème fraiche, salmon lox, organic arugula tossed in a vinaigrette, fried capers, and red onions. The dough is crispy, and the toppings are very fresh. This is one tasty flatbread, and it fills us right up!

At the End of the Day…

We finish our treats just in time to head out to the beach for the sky show. Maybe it’s all the bonfires on the beach, but it does not feel like a February night in the PNW. The sunset just keeps getting more and more vivid, so we stay until the last orange rays have faded away.

Now it’s time to head back to Portland. And winter.

Darcy’s Potato Salad

Pro Tip: When making potato salad, always add the vinegar to warm potatoes. Warm potatoes absorb the vinegar enhancing the flavor of the potatoes.
For salt I taste as I go adding a little at a time.
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Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 6


  • 3 lbs red potatoes unpeeled
  • 1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 green onions including green parts thinly sliced
  • 2 celery stalks chopped
  • 3 tbsp fresh parsley
  • 3 tbsp fresh basil
  • 2 tbsp fresh mint
  • 3 hard boiled eggs cooled, peeled, and chopped
  • 1 tsp Salt or to taste
  • ¼ tsp fresh ground pepper
  • dusting of cayenne pepper


  • Place washed potatoes in a pot and cover with salted water
  • Bring to a boil and cook until tender, about 15 to 20 minutes
  • Meanwhile, in a large bowl add the wet ingredients, then add the chopped onion and celery
  • When the cooked potatoes are cool enough to touch but still warm, chop and add to the bowl, and toss
  • Add salt and toss
  • Add the fresh herbs
  • Add the chopped eggs gently toss and adjust salt
  • Sprinkle with fresh ground pepper and dust with cayenne
  • Cover and chill at least 2 hours or over night
  • Garnish with a sprig of fresh basil or mint before serving
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!