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Three Unforgettable Hangouts on Oregon Coast Off the Usual Path

Published 05/12/22 at 4:15 AM PST
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Three Unforgettable Hangouts on Oregon Coast Off the Usual Path

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(Oregon Coast) – Sometimes the very best places to visit are the most obscure. Especially on the Oregon coastline, there are some spots that simply have more to offer than you'd think. On top of that, they're off-the-beaten path in many ways, or extremely easy to miss if you don't know what you're looking for.

Simply letting loose of travel agendas and running wild while exploring is often the way to go out on these shores, and you'll likely find extremely coveted beachy delights like these. (All photos Oregon Coast Beach Connection)


Just south of Pacific City, Neskowin is the quiet little resort that's constantly threatening to explode into something bigger, but it never does. Thankfully. Neskowin is also interesting in that essentially lies on the border between north Oregon coast and central Oregon coast.

Hit the beach and you'll often find loads of people milling about, but the place has its secrets. Cross the creek, walk towards mysterious Proposal Rock and the population density drops. You can actually walk around on top of the rock and check out the views from up there (although be extremely cautious of the tide so as not to get stuck.)

Walk further beyond the rock and you'll definitely be more alone, but you'll quickly be in the presence of something ancient. Here, scattered all about are the Oregon coast's most famous set of ghost forest stumps, clocking in at around 1,900 years old. Slightly eerie in their look they're aptly named, and they tell a surprising and complex geologic story.

Somewhere about that time the landscape changed fairly quickly, probably over just a few decades. A forest here was slowly choked to death by sea water, ironically the very thing that preserved them. Sand levels simply rose with the land shift and covered them all up.

And no, they are not the product of a sudden earthquake as the online rumors persist: that was proven two decades ago by two geologists. Hotels in Pacific City - Where to eat - Pacific City Maps and Virtual Tours

Winema Beach

This unusual place, just a few miles north of Neskowin, is a true hidden spot. Off to the west of 101 there's an unassuming sign that declares Winema Road. Follow that to the bottom and a tract of sandy beach that nearly no one knows about. There's another blob of a rock structure that looks a bit like Pacific City's Haystack Rock to the north, which features a flat stretch at the top that's perfect for lounging.

Other interesting shapes and crevices present themselves as you walk northward. Some spots in the cliffs seem to invite climbing and exploring. And there's more than one hole in the rocks to huddle from the wind and cuddle a bit.

The cliffs soar high and become a striking gold at sunset, with some awe-inspiring homes up top. After about a mile or so, the beach ends abruptly at the southern end of Nestucca Bay, affording you an a new viewpoint of the area. Hotels in Pacific City - Where to eat - Pacific City Maps and Virtual Tours

Bob Creek Wayside

A little ways south of Yachats, close to the end of the central Oregon coast, Bob Creek Wayside is just a brief blip as you pass along the highway: don't blink or you'll miss it. Just barely past Strawberry Hill and Neptune Beach, this almost mystical spot appears.

Far more tidepool life occupies Bob Creek than humans, and much of the time you'll find them poking around for the abundant agates there. The tidepools are endlessly fascinating, and they really emerge at lower tides, clinging to odd, mushroom-shaped rocky blobs at the southern end. At this end, there's also a small sea cave and a huge boulder that creates a sort of arch by leaning up against the cliffs here.

At the north end, you'll find plenty of mussels - but you'll have to cross the creek to do so. During the winter that's difficult, if not impossible and certainly unwise. During the summer months, it's much easier.

The highlight is that trippy cave, of course, which surely hides treasure. Well, at least that's what your imagination will tell you.

- Upper Lane County Maps, Virtual Tour



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