|NATIONAL PARKS QUICKLINKS|
Stretching from the mouth of the Columbia River to the California border, the 382-mile Oregon Coast Trail links sandy shoreline, rugged headlands, and numerous state parks. The second section of the OCT starts in the town of Gearhart and travels 12.7 miles to Ecola Point in Ecola State Park.
From the west end of 10th Street in Gearhart, walk south along the beach for half a mile, then turn left to connect with the Ridge Trail. The route briefly follows the Ridge Trail before meandering through town and merging onto the Oregon Coast Highway for a 0.6-mile stretch to the town of Seaside. At mile 3.5, turn left and head south on Seaside's Promenade, a 1.5-mile boardwalk that overlooks the ocean.
At the end of the Promenade, turn right onto Ocean Vista Drive/Sunset Drive and follow it to Ecola State Park. At mile 6.4, turn left on Tillamook Head Trail (prepare to gain more than 1,000 feet of elevation in the next 1.6 miles). The route travels past Tillamook Head at mile 9.5, then visits Tillamook Head Lighthouse overlook and Indian Beach. The section hike ends at Ecola Point parking area at mile 12.7. Pick up your shuttle car and return to Gearhart.
CAUTION: Do not try to round headlands without knowledge of tide heights and times. Bring a tide chart and a detailed topo map. Free tide tables are available at state park offices, information centers, and the Hatfield Marine Science Center website.
-Mapped by Echo Hobbs, Salem Hiking Meetup