Sunday, August 18, 2019

Heceta Head Lighthouse Loop Trail

August 14, 2019.

On our last full day of camping at Carl G Washburne SP, we hiked a loop trail that begins at the campground.  Our hike began with the Valley Trail which wanders through the woods for almost 1.5 miles parallel to highway 101.  There are a couple of meadows which Elk are known to visit, but none were sighted on our hike.  Eventually the trail intersects and crosses Highway 101 which can make for an interesting game of Frogger.  Once across we headed south and the trail (part of the Oregon Coast Trail) became the Heceta Head Lighthouse Trail.  As with most coastal hikes in Oregon, our trail went up and down and had lots of switchbacks as it navigates the Oregon Coast terrain.  This section also had lots of deep ruts and plenty of wooden steps, mostly to help with erosion, that created an additional challenge.  In all there were about 100 steps up heading out to the lighthouse and thus 100 more steps down on the return trip.  Made working out on a StairMaster seem like a piece of cake.  We also ran into clouds/fog for the first time on our hikes which translated to raindrops when the wind would blow the trees.  After about 1.5 miles we arrived at the Heceta Head Lighthouse and took time to enjoy the view of lighthouse, Devil's Elbow rock, the coast,  and we walked to and visited the gift shop.  When we headed out we retraced our hike along the Heceta Head Lighthouse Trail but instead of returning on the Valley Trail, we made a left and took the short Hobbit Beach Trail down to the beach and then hiked along the beach till we reached the State Park beach access trail.  In all our loop was 7.6 miles and over our 4 night stay at Carl G Washburne SP we were able to hike just over 35 miles.  Now we'll have to go back to work to rest up.

Trekking Together
Glenn & Carol

Time for another hike!

Like most Oregon Coast Hikes there are uphills and downhills with plenty of ferns!

One of our ocean viewpoints without a view today

Heceta Head Lighthouse finally comes into view from the trail.

Heceta Head Lighthouse

A thistle still in bloom along the coast

View of Devil's Elbow from the lighthouse

View of return hike with clouds/fog along the Oregon Coast Trail

This log was here when we hiked this trail in 2010, just aged a little bit like us.

Last junction as we head down to Hobbit Beach and return to camp

Saturday, August 17, 2019

Cape Perpetua

August 13, 2019

After hiking double digit miles the previous day, we decided to head to the Cape Perpetua Scenic Area and hike a couple of short trails that happen to be the only two trails we have not hiked at this beautiful park.  If you are ever in the Florence, Yachats, Waldport, or Newport area and have time, don't miss a visit to Cape Perpetua.  There are lots of trails and hikes of varying miles featuring shoreline, incredible views, and old growth forest.  Our first hike was a relatively flat "family friendly" 2 mile trek (round trip) from the visitor center along the Giant Spruce Tree trail to see the Giant Spruce Tree.  There are many large trees in the park, but this one evidently is the king/queen of them all. The trail followed Cove Creek and it did not take long to arrive at the tree - wow!  After taking a few minutes at one of the benches to look at this tree and of course take pictures, we headed back to the visitor center.  From there we headed up to and hiked the Discovery Loop which is a 1.4 mile lollipop hike.  The first .4 miles is a slight uphill climb followed by a .6 mile loop that has display boards telling you facts and history about old growth forest.  There were so many trees and ferns and so very green, it made this a very beautiful hike, even though it was short.  So now we have hiked a least a portion of each trail at Cape Perpetua. But we still want to come back and hike here again in the future.  Later, we added a few other hikes later to the day back at Washburne SP to bring today's total miles to 7.8.  Still one more day of hiking left.

Trekking Together
Glenn & Carol

The very green & relatively flat Giant Spruce Tree trail

Looking up at the Giant Spruce Tree

The sign says it all - hope we don't live that long!

One last view of the King/Queen

Carol & Katie at the Giant Spruce Tree base

Ferns everywhere

View of trees along the Discovery Loop trail

One of many very nice display boards telling the history of Old Growth Forests

The Discovery Loop trail

A great place to visit, hike and relax!

804 Trail & Amanda's Trail

August 12, 2019

As the Oregon Coast Trail heads south into Yachats, it follows the path known as the 804 Trail leaving the sandy beach for a paved trail that wanders along the coast and then skirts it way through and around some neighborhoods and hotels.  On our first day camping at Carl G Washburne SP we drove up to Yachats and started at the south end of the 804 trail and hiked the entire trail to its end at the beach -  a 3.5  mile round trip.  Along the route are plenty of benches and tables for relaxing and taking in the views and the sound of ocean waves and sea birds is always in the air.  After enjoying this beautiful "warm up" hike, we drove to the south end of town and parked at a pullout to hike another section of the OCT.  We hiked along both sides of Highway 101 till eventually we arrived at the statue of Amanda, the namesake for this portion of the OCT known as Amanda's Trail.  From that point on most of the trail was up, up, up until 2.2 miles later we arrived at the Whispering Spruce Viewpoint parking area that is part of the Cape Perpetua Scenic Area.  We took in the amazing views during a much needed break before heading back down the trail and eventually to our car.  Since signs were posted that a mother bear and cubs had a den along the Amanda Trail, we kept an ever watchful eye out while hiking along this beautiful trail.  This hike was about 7 miles total and with a few other short hikes later in the day plus the 804 Trail, we finished with a daily total of 11.9 hiking miles - and this was only day one!

Trekking Together
Glenn & Carol

The start of the 804 Trail from the south end of town

The 804 Trail literally follows the coast.

One of many coves along the 804 Trail

End of the 804 Trail and the beginning of 7 miles of walking beach!

Hiking along the Oregon Coast Trail

A "nature made" tunnel on the 804 Trail

Amanda statue at beginning of Amanda's Trail section of OCT

View southward of coast from Whispering Spruce Viewpoint in Cape Perpetua Scenic Area