Category: Uncategorized

Kentucky Falls Hike–Saturday, July 23

Kentucky Falls Hike–Saturday, July 23

Registration required. REGISTER HERE

The Main Hike

This hike is to Kentucky Falls and back. Kentucky Falls area offers views of 3 waterfalls two of which drop over 100 feet.  The hike is 2.5 miles down to the falls through old growth Douglas Fir and Hemlock. We’ll view the falls and then hike 2.5 miles back on a switchback trail.  It is rated moderate to difficult.  The difficulty is based on the elevation gain, but you can control the difficulty with lots of rests. Plan on 3.5 hours to complete the hike with plenty of time to relax, eat lunch, enjoy the falls and then walk back up the switch back trail at your leisure.

This is a beautiful hike through old growth forest. Even without the falls it would be a great hike.

Pack a lunch to enjoy either during or after the hike. The drive to and from the trailhead is a long, slow drive. (gravel roads). We will be caravaning from the Dunes Information Center in Reedsport, but to get an idea of the route, check out the directions at the trailhead site.

Optional Additional Hike

After we complete the Kentucky Falls hike, some hikers may wish to stop at the North Fork Smith River Trailhead and hike along along the river (out and back). From last reports, the trail may be overgrown with downed trees. That’s one reason why we aren’t offering the traditional through hike from Kentucky Falls to this trailhead. The other reason is that the necessary shuttle adds a lot of travel time.

By going out and back from the trailhead, hikers who want to do this additional hike can go as far as they want, and turn around.

Location and Time

We will leave the Dune Information Center parking lot in Reedsport at 8:30 AM.  Please arrive ten to fifteen minutes before that to sign in and coordinate cars.

Directions – From Coos Bay Visitor Center in downtown Coos Bay travel 26.6 miles N on Hwy 101. Visitor center is on left directly opposite the turnoff for Hwy 38.  We will leave from the Dune Information Center at 8:30 and reach the Kentucky Falls trail head around 10:00.  Some gravel roads and pot holes are on our route so we will go easy.

Blacklock Point–A Special Hike Opportunity

Blacklock Point–A Special Hike Opportunity

March 30, 2022–3:30 PM

Offered by the Oregon Shores Conservation Coalition

If you are curious about why Blacklock Point was  proposed to be designated as a Marine Conservation Area, and you have interest in learning more about the state’s rocky habitat designation process, you can join Oregon Shores board member Larry Basch and myself on a hike to Curry County’s Blacklock Point on Wednesday, March 30, beginning at 3:30 p.m.  We will assemble at Cape Blanco Airport trailhead.

In late 2020, Blacklock Point was one of six intertidal areas proposed for designation as a Marine Conservation Area under Oregon’s new Rocky Habitat Management Strategy. It is still being considered, and a workshop will take place in late April where proponents, including Oregon Shores, will discuss the proposal with state agencies as part of the decision-making process; those agencies will then pass recommendations on to the Ocean Policy Advisory Council.

To highlight this area and explain why it is worthy of such protective designation, Dr. Basch will lead an interpretive hike, discussing among other things Blacklock’s ecological connection to Cape Blanco, which has been proposed as a Marine Research Reserve as part of the Rocky Habitat strategy. Larry, who was the primary contributor to the Blacklock site designation proposal, is a marine ecologist, scuba diver, naturalist, and community conservation activist in Coos County. He engages in applied research, adaptive management and monitoring, and teaching.

The hike is about 1.75 miles each way. Be sure to dress for the weather and wear shoes that can get wet and muddy.  Assemble at the Cape Blanco airport parking area before 3:30; the hike will leave promptly, to make sure to allow enough time to complete the round-trip in daylight.  To reach the trailhead, from Highway 101 turn on Airport Road opposite Pacific High School, just north of the hamlet of Sixes, between Bandon and Port Orford.

For more information, please contact Jessica Jones, CoastWatch Volunteer Coordinator

Heceta Head and Hobbit Trail–Sunday, March 27, 2022

Heceta Head and Hobbit Trail–Sunday, March 27, 2022

The historic and popular Heceta Head Lighthouse sits 150 feet over the ocean and the light started providing aid to navigation in March, 1894. The light still shines, and this hike provides spectacular views both up and down the coast. In addition to the light, you’ll pass the lightkeeper’s home, which is now a bed and breakfast.

Please sign up for this hike

The Hikes:

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.

For a Shorter Hike

  • Shorter distance hikers who want to avoid the climb 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.

Location and Time

We will meet at 9:30 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.

Re-Scheduled Hanging Rock Hike, Sunday June 20

Re-Scheduled Hanging Rock Hike, Sunday June 20

Registration Required. Registration form HERE. If you registered for this hike on June 13 you don’t need to register. I will contact you.

This hike (and the view it offers) is well worth the drive time to get to the trail head.

Hanging Rock, in the Wild Rogue River Wilderness is perched at 3500 ft overlooking the Rogue River canyon and the rapids below.  The hike to the rock itself is a 1.9 mile round trip. That will be the Short Hike.  Those wanting a longer hike can extend the hike by following the Panther Ridge Trail along the ridge for another two miles, stopping for a lunch break in a clearing on the trail, and returning to the trailhead (an ‘out and back’ hike along the ridge)

The Panther Ridge trail winds along this high ridge under magnificent stands of old growth timber with rhododendron and scrub oak and nests of bear grass.  

Hikers who have taken this hike in the past may recall that we set up a shuttle and hiked further on the Panther Ridge trail. By doing an out and back we’re eliminating the shuttle, saving the time, and reducing concerns about spreading COVID.

You might want to finish the day with optional trips to Coquille Falls (1 mile moderate–steep climb back up) and Elk Creek Falls (.25 miles easy),  which are both on our way back toward Powers.  

Coquille River Falls

Bring at least 1 liter of water if you are taking the short hike and at least 2 if you plan on taking the longer hike.   Pack a lunch.

Boots and walking sticks are recommended.

Location and Time

Those coming from Coos Bay (or North), Bandon, Coquille, or Port Orford should gather in Myrtle Point at the OSU County Extension office before 8:00. At 8:00 we will begin to caravan 45 SLOW miles to the trailhead. We’ll stop at a couple of rest stops along the way. (This assumes that Port Orford hikers will come through Bandon. If you wish to go to Powers via the Sixes River Road, you could meet us at the Powers County Park at 8:30)

Directions to County Extension office in Myrtle Point:  From Coquille travel on Hwy 42 to Myrtle Point. As you enter town turn right on Ash St. then right on 6th street then right on Alder St.  Extension office is at 631 Alder St.

If you are coming from Gold Beach (or South), you might want to meet us at the Coquille River Falls Trailhead. You can find directions here: Trip to Coquille River Falls Trailhead. If you plan to do that, email so that we know to expect you. Plan to be there at 9:30.

We should be at the Hanging Rock Trailhead by 10:00.

Directions to the trailhead

While it would be best to caravan, if you miss the departure time, or if you want to do this hike on your own, here are links to directions to the trailhead:

From Gold Beach

From Coos Bay

From Bandon

From Port Orford Note–These directions take you via the Sixes River Road to Powers. That’s shorter (mileage-wise) than going through Bandon, but the road conditions aren’t as good.