Friday, June 24, 2016

Ecola State Park, 6/18/2016

Ecola State Park is located between Seaside and Cannon Beach, OR, on the 9 miles of Pacific coastline called Tillamook Head. Beaches, hiking and fantastic coastal views all make this a beautiful place to spend the day. We had decided to hike the 2.6 mile Clatsop Loop Trail (dog-friendly, too!) 

This trail was established by the Clatsop and Tillamook people centuries ago. Members of the Lewis and Clark expedition walked this trail in 1806. It is part of the Lewis ad Clark National Historic Trail as well as the Oregon Coast Trail. It winds along the cliffs of Tillamook Head to Hiker's Camp

Below are views near the beginning of Clatsop Loop Trail of Indian Beach, a popular surfing location. 

The trail ascends to the cliffs through the lush forest. 

There are multiple viewpoints along the trail of the well-known Tillamook Rock Lighthouse (1879-1947). It is located 1 mile out to sea here.

Hiker's Camp has three cabins with four bunks in each that provide primitive overnight accommodations for Oregon Coast Trail backpackers (available on a first come, first serve basis). 

Vault toilets are located nearby but there is no water or firewood available (you have to bring it with you). We met an interesting couple from Australia who had spent the night here. 

We took the spur trail to the Tillamook Rock Lighthouse Viewpoint for an even closer look at this historic landmark.

We had a picnic lunch near the parking lot when we completed the loop trail. Afterwards, we hiked down to Indian Beach

We walked the steep path down to the beautiful sandy beach.

I am fascinated by the rock formations we see along the Oregon coast. The erosion caused by wind, sand, and tidal currents so interesting and unique.

Our doggy, Sadie, had such fun running around the beach and playing on the rocks. We are so impressed with the state of Oregon that permits dogs along the entire coast. I do not think there is another state that can boast the same.

The picturesque Tillamook Rock Lighthouse was also in view from Indian Beach. 

Our final stop for the day was at Ecola Point for a look at Crescent Beach. There is also a large picnic shelter here with a stone fireplace. 

Due to damage caused by recent storms, the trail to the end of the point was closed. We were able to see some of the offshore rocks here, though. Many species of birds nest along the cliffs and the rocks in the region.

Additional hiking trails are both north and south of the Clatsop Loop Trail. We really enjoyed the day we spent here. There is a $5 day use fee to enter Ecola State Park. Annual passes are available as well. For additional information, check them out on-line.

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