Wednesday, June 23, 2021
Today we drove over to the Oregon coast with Peggy and Ernie! Our first stop was the Oregon Dunes Overlook. There are trails that you can hike over the dunes to the Pacific Ocean.
After walking around the dunes we got back on route 101 and drove to the city of Florence which is along the Siuslaw River. We had a nice lunch after we parked and walked back into town.
Florence has sea lion caves where we saw many Stellar sea lions relaxing! These sea lions are also threatened.
Near Florence we could see from the scenic viewpoint off the highway the Heceta Head Lighthouse which has been restored. The lighthouse was first lit in 1894. In 1963 the lighthouse was automated and run by computers. The former Keepers house was turned into a Bed and Breakfast in 1995. Due to COVID the tours of the Keepers house and the lighthouse were canceled.
The views along the Oregon coast were beautiful!
At Cape Perpetua we saw more of the rugged Oregon coast. From the viewpoint you could see how the ocean has carved blowholes and other formations.
The Captain Cook Trail is a loop that we hiked and we could see Thor’s Well which is also known as the Drainpipe of the Pacific. At Thor’s Well you can watch the water come in and then shoot up! It wasn’t very high when we were there.
Devil’s Churn is a narrow inlet of the Pacific Ocean. It is a huge rock chasm which is a deep crack in the Earth’s surface. Devil’s Churn is believed to have formed from a collapsed lava tube going back many, many years to Oregon’s volcanic days. The ocean waves crash and then churn!
On our drive along the coast we also hiked the Giant Spruce Trail. We hiked through the dense forest to a Sitka spruce tree that is more than 500 years old. The giant spruce is more than 185 feet tall and a circumference of 40 feet! Pictures of the giant spruce are below.
Baker Beach is located north of the town of Florence. To get to the sandy beach, the trail is about half a mile through the grassy dunes.
As the sun was beginning to set we started back toward our campground. On our way we saw elk eating near the Dean Creek Elk viewing area. There are a series of pastures along the Oregon highway 38 that are maintained by the Bureau of Land Management. You can view elk almost everyday. Today we saw many females but no bull elks. They were busy feeding!
We had a such a good time exploring the Oregon Coast that we are going to different areas along the coast tomorrow!