One of the few hikes in Oregon that starts high and descends to its turnaround point, this 5-miler drops to an oceanside overlook with incredible views. From the trailhead, head southwest past hemlocks and Sitka spruces, the largest spruce species in the world. After 0.6 mile, the route passes a plaque honoring the 1943 crew of a crashed B-17; look left for great ocean views.
From here, the sometimes-muddy path continues southwest, passing lush green plants that grow on the massive trunks of the Sitka spruces. After 1.5 miles, stop to check out the inspiring vista above a cove, then continue on—an even better viewpoint awaits 1 mile farther. The trail reaches Cape Lookout Point at mile 2.5. Watch for gray whale spouts off the cape near the lighted buoy. (Calves are sometimes spotted directly below point.) Sea lions and bald eagles are a common sight, too. After the nature show, return to trailhead.
-Mapped by Joe Kurmaskie
- Distance: 8.1
Location: 45.3442001, -123.9683304
Trail starts behind big sign. Bear left @ Y-junction; this is one of the few hikes in Oregon that actually starts high, then descends to the turnaround point at Cape Lookout. It's only 800 feet, but you'll feel the climb on the return hike.
Location: 45.3444328, -123.9697495
Keep straight; pass hemlocks and Sitka spruces, the largest spruce species in the world.
Location: 45.341551, -123.9767969
Look left for great ocean view. A plaque honors 1943 crew of a crashed B-17.
Location: 45.3400051, -123.9821184
Trail is muddy in places. Other lush green plants, called epiphytes, grow on the massive trunks of Sitka spruces.
Location: 45.3398015, -123.9839315
Nice overlook to the town of Oceanside. Caution: Sharp cliff drop on left.
Location: 45.3393415, -123.9890277
One of the many boardwalks over muddy patches. Hike switches from deep forest to ocean views and back again.
Location: 45.3397788, -123.9922786
Inspiring vista above cove. An even better viewpoint is 1 mile farther.
Location: 45.337984, -123.997407
Continue west along bluff line.
Location: 45.3376522, -124.0068376
Lookout has a chain guardrail and rocks to sit on. Watch for gray whale spouts off cape near lighted buoy. (Calves are sometimes spotted directly below point.) Best times: December-January, March-April. Sea lions and bald eagles, too. After the nature show, return to trailhead.