I was never much for camping until I started camping in Oregon. Specifically camping on the Oregon coast. It has the perfect blend of beach and green trees. There are many popular camp spots, but I have only tried a couple of these spots. There are many that I would love to camp at and maybe I will get to all of them. Here are a few that are popular and picturesque.
Florence, Oregon is a popular coastal town, especially if you like the Dunes. I’m not much for riding Atvs, but I do love horses. Riding horses on the beach is a dream of mine that I intend to achieve. There is a trail where you can ride horses on the beach in Florence. I have heard it is a lot of fun. There is also a state park with one of my favorite trails, lighthouses and beach access. It is the Heceta Head State Park. The closest camp spot to all of these lovely attractions is Honeyman campground. There is no beach access which is a bummer for me. However it is close to the Dunes and tourist attractions. You can camp or rent a yurt. For some reason the yurt prices here are higher than other campgrounds so you may just want to grab a camp spot. There is a lovely river called the Siuslaw River. Many people fish, kayak and enjoy the scenic view.
A place that I visit, but have not yet camped at is Lake Marie. These is a beautiful river located outside of Reedsport. This is a small town on the Oregon coast that is close to Dunes and Winchester Bay. There is a lighthouse, scenic view point and a trail around the lake that I love to walk on. There are beautiful trees and flowers. Unfortunately since it is a small area there are not many camp spots which means if you get a spot you are lucky. I love the view of the river and mountains. Many people fish, kayak and study the various plants around the river. The trail has many of the plants named so it is also educational.
My favorite place to camp is on Beverly Beach in Newport, Oregon. My family has a yearly camping tradition of camping at this campground in the summer. It is bigger than some of the other camp spots but it fills up fast. This is a great beach to beachcomb and look for seashells. It is picturesque for taking landscape photos which I love to do. It is close to the Bay, shopping, Yaquina Head Lighthouse and other tourists attractions. I mostly love that is is right by the beach and such a picturesque place to visit.
Oregon is known for many beautiful places and interesting wildlife. I have always loved Heceta Beach which is just outside of Florence, Oregon. I love taking landscape photos there and just relaxing. I have taken the Heceta trail to the Heceta Lighthouse which has a great view at the top of the trail. I have seen sea lions, grey whales and picturesque sunsets, but until my trip last week, I had never seen the tidepools on this beach.
I was taking pictures of the awesome caves and rocky cliffs when I realized the tide was coming in. I started looking for seashells, but noticed because of the rocks that there were only pieces of shells. Also there were seagulls flying around eating the crabs and other sea creatures they could find to eat. I noticed some jellyfish that were dead and had been washed up from the tide. I also noticed pools of water around the rocks which are tidepools. I was climbing on the rocks carefully and looking to see what was in these pools. I saw many red and green sea anemones which looked pretty neat. I saw muscles, sand shrimp, sand crabs, hermit crabs, tiny fish and tadpoles. The most interesting ocean life I saw was a starfish. In fact, I saw a few starfish. I have always loved starfish, especially if they have a pretty color like the starfish I saw clinging to the rocks on the beach. There were many tourists out so it was hard to get pictures of these creatures, but I did manage to get a few. Now I can add tidepools to the interesting tourist attraction of Heceta Beach and Heceta Head State Park.
The Heceta Head Beach is one of my favorite Oregon Coast beaches. It is actually part of the Heceta Head Lighthouse State Park. It costs $5 to park and enter but it is worth it to me. I go there so much I think I may get a State Park yearly pass just for this park. I love that the beach is more like a cove. It is actually located at the mouth of Cape Creek. You can picnic here, get in the water, walk on the sand, take beautiful pictures and just relax.
If you’re a little more adventurous and like to explore, like I do, you will want to see the Heceta Head Lighthouse. Of course the lighthouse is on top of a cliff which is an excellent viewpoint of the ocean. I have also seen Sea Lions and a whale from this point. The lighthouse is neat and there are volunteers who will give you a free tour between 11 am and 3pm. I must admit that I take the trail for the exercise and the view at the top.
The Heceta Head Trail is part of a 7 mile walk. The trail to the lighthouse is wheelchair accessible and very enjoyable for me. If you want to take a harder walking trail there are trails that go up into the woods. I am not that athletic so I don’t take those trails. I take the trail to the lighthouse and always stop along the way to take pictures. The nice thing about nature is that even if you have been to a place a million times, you never know when you might catch something new on camera. Sometimes the beach has a different look and feel on a rainy day. Sometimes a bird or squirrel runs across the path and I quickly try to get the picture. Sometimes there are flowers in bloom that I didn’t see before. If you get a chance be sure to visit Heceta Head Lighthouse State Park. This park is located a little bit outside of Florence, Oregon. Even the drive on a sunny day is beautiful.
If you happen to be passing through Florence, Oregon while traveling the Oregon Coast, you will see a big bridge. This bridge is known as the Siuslaw River Bridge. As you can probably guess this bridge covers the Siuslaw River on the U.S. Route 101. This bridge was designed by Conde McCullough and built by the Mercer-Fraser Company of Eureka California. This bridge was funded by the Public Works Administration. The bridge opened in 1936.
The length of the bridge is 1,568 feet. It has a 140 foot double-leaf bascule which provides 110 feet horizontal clearance for boat traffic. The bascule section is flanked by two 154 foot reinforced concrete arches identical to the Alsea Bay Bridge. Four Art Deco-style obelisks store the mechanical equipment. There was also a living area for the bridge operator. The total cost to build the bridge was $527,000 which is now equal to $9.4 million as of 2017. This bridge was added to the National Register of Historical places on August 5, 2005.
The Siuslaw River is home to many Chinook Salmon and has become a popular fishing spot. The Siuslaw River Bridge is a beautiful piece of history. The Siuslaw River was named for the Indian tribe that once lived by the river. When in Florence, Oregon you will see this beautiful rive and bridge. There is a small garden with a view for looking out at the Siuslaw River Bridge.