Heceta Head and Hobbit Trail Hike

Sunday, March 6, 2016

 

This hike will provide a few different options, depending on how much difficulty you are prepared for.  All options provide great views and interesting woodland vegetation.

 

Long Hikers

  • The more difficult hike (which really isn't THAT difficult) will start at the Heceta Head parking area, and proceed past the old light keeper's house to the Heceta Head lighthouse.  From the lighthouse we'll climb to a viewpoint ABOVE the lighthouse for a unique view of the light, and then over the mountain to the Hobbit Trail.  We'll take the Hobbit Trail to the beach, and then return over the same route to the parking lot.  That will be a distance of about four miles over well maintained trails.  The difficulty is in the elevation gain (over 500 feet) in both directions.
  • Those who wish to lengthen this hike can then drive to the Washburn State Park Day Use area to hike the Valley Trail and the China Creek loop.  This trail is fairly level and the hike, including the loop is just under 4 miles.

(NOTE:  Under normal circumstances, these two hikes could have been combined into one, but a bridge over Blowout Creek has been deemed unsafe, and part of the Valley Trail is closed)

 

For a shorter Hike

  • Shorter hikers will start out with the long hikers and will proceed to the viewpoint above the lighthouse.  This group will then return to the parking area and drive to a turnout about .9 miles North.  From there you will proceed down the Hobbit trail to the beach.  You will probably run into the 'long hikers' along this trail.  Each leg of this hike is about a mile, for a total of two miles.

 

Both groups should probably pack a lunch (to enjoy either during or after the hikes), and dress for diverse weather conditions.  Walking sticks may be helpful for those taking the long hike.

 

Location and Time

 

We will meet at 9:00 at the Fred Meyer parking lot on the North side of Florence.  We should gather near the gas station at the north end of the lot.  That way we will have an opportunity to consolidate vehicles.  There is a day use fee ($5.00) at the Heceta Head parking lot, and while the parking in other locations (the 'turnout' and Washburn SP) is free, the space at the turnout is limited.

 

If you have an annual parks pass, bring that along.

 

Suggested Carpool sites and Departure Times:

  • Coos Bay Visitor Center—7:30,
  • Dune Information Center in Reedsport8:10,
  • Rays in Bandon—7:00,
  • Coquille Visitor Center—7:00,
  • Battle Rock Park Visitor Center—6:20

 

South Coast Striders