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good coastal trails or easy hikes

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good coastal trails or easy hikes

Hi everyone,

My trip to the coast is coming very soon and I am so exicited, thanks to the coast experts on the board for helping me out! If I could ask one more question....

I would like to know if anyone could help me out. I know that there must be a ton of hikes/ trails on the coast but instead of knowing of too many, because I won't have time to do them all, I was wondering what is a really nice trail, or a few, 3 -4, easy hikes along the coast.

I 'll be bewteen Astoria and Reedsport, Does anyone know any must see trails/ hikes between that ( huge stretch) :) some that stand out more than others.

thanks ladies and gents!!!


Florence, Oregon
Destination Expert
for Oregon Coast
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6,071 posts
18 reviews
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1. Re: good coastal trails or easy hikes

Two words: OSWALD WEST!!!

IMHO, some of the nicest day-hikes on the entire coast are contained within Os West State park, 3 miles north of Manzanita. You can start by hiking to the top of Neah-Kah-Nie Mt (NKN MT)from the south side. It's about 3 miles to the top, where you will find some of the nicest views on the entire Oregon Coast. While not really an easy hike (you gain about 1000 feet in three miles) it's worth the effort. I would rate it a 3 out of 5 on the difficulty scale. From here you can continue on another 3 miles or so back to Hwy 101 if you choose. I recommend returning the way you came. This way you won't have to walk Hwy 101 back to your car or arrange for a shuttle. Plus, it's not near as nice of a hike.

The next good section of trail is from Hwy 101 where the NKN MT north side trail hits Hwy 101, north into the developed areas of Os West. This is closer to a 2 out of 5 in difficulty. This area is called the Elk Flats b/c there are aften large heards of Roosevelt Elk in the area. There is a spur trail west that ends at a cliff 300 feet above the ocean with a fantastic views. This is a little known, but very good whale watching point. Part of the movie "The Temp" w/ Timothy Hutton and Lara Flyn Boyle was filmed here back in the 80"s. The trail ends near Short Sands Beach where you cross a wooden suspension bridge (that I designed and built) and pick up the improved paths through the park. They will lead you to my personal fav, the Cape Falcon Trial.

I have a special fondess for this trail b/c I helped construct it back in the early 70's, but aside from that, it's just a beautuful and easy walk. Say a two on the scale. There are several great vantage points along the way, with unsurpassed views of the coast looking south. Along the way you will pass through a large area of young timber. This area was devistated during a huge windstorm in November of 1981. State Park's salvaged what they could then replanted the area.

Another of my favs is the Cape Lookout Trail at Cape Lookout State Park SW of Tillamook. It's about 2 miles out to the point wit hgreat views.

Closer to where I currently live, I would recommend all of the trails in the Cape Perpetua area south of Yachats. There are a wide range of trails to select from, some with views, some contained soley within an old-growth forest.

Finally, a little further south, I recommend the Heceta Head Lighthouse Trail from Carl G. Washburne State Park. Sections of this trail are fairly difficult, say a 4 on a scale of 5, but it's only a little over a mile long. The views from the top looking north are fantastic. As you continue on, you will ultimately come to Heceta Head Lightouse.


Portland, Oregon
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2. Re: good coastal trails or easy hikes

Nothing better for vacation planning than good local knowledge. Great recommendations, Den. Even though I've lived in Oregon most of my life, I've learned a lot from your posts.

If you've still got legs after following Den's recommendations, a hike I particularly like is out Cascade Head, five or so miles north of Lincoln City. Depending on how long of a hike you want, you can start at the trailhead right off hwy 101, or drive into Cascade Head Ranch and catch the trail there. The view from the Head is one of my favorites on the Oregon coast.

3. Re: good coastal trails or easy hikes

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