Oregon Coast Trail Official Signage PLAN
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National Coast Trail Association Recommendation, Oregon Coast Trail: POSTPONE OR CANCEL Thru-Hikes and Overnight Backpacking Trips due to COVID-19 until further notice.
Detailed information from our organization can be found here, and from Oregon State Parks here.

Planning a trip along the Oregon Coast Trail is crucial to meet the unique challenges of coastal hiking, especially tidal and water crossings, and to best enhance the overall recreational experience. 
Here you will find some of the most basic information to best prepare for your trip, such as a suggested thru-hike intinerary of the entire Oregon Coast Trail, tides and specifics on crossing rivers, bays, estuaries, streams and creeks, and one hiking guide author's information about how to make connections between gaps or uncompleted trail segments.

Water Crossings: There are a number of rivers, bays, estuaries, streams and creeks to cross along the Oregon Coast Trail, and information in this section is current for 2020.

Ferry Service across Nehalem Bay and the Umpqua River
Making Connections between Uncompleted Segments:  The Oregon Parks & Recreation Department is working with others to complete the Oregon Coast Trail with about 45 miles total of gaps along the envisioned 400-mile trail system not yet developed.  This means someone hiking the entire Oregon Coast Trail or doing significant stretches needs to know how to connect between existing trails.

Bonnie Henderson
has hiked the entire Oregon Coast Trail and developed a section of her own website blog sharing her ideas on how to make such connections. We simply offer these links to her information to assist you in planning your trip, especially in making connections between gaps in the Oregon Coast TrailNOTE: To move forward to the next hiking section within each area of the coast, simply scroll down to the bottom of each webpage and click on "Newer Post."  Bonnie is also the author of Day Hiking Oregon Coast (See the Book section for specific details.)
ISSUE: HECETA HEAD TUNNEL and the COQUILLE RIVER BRIDGE!!!  Serious Safety Recommendations!

Given our assessment that walking through this tunnel or across this specific bridge poses a serious risk of personal injury to self and drivers, towards addressing the issue of public safety we recommend NOT walking them and arranging transport by motor vehicle at these two locations.  Our asessment is based on the fact that there are NO pedestrian facilites either in the tunnel or the bridge.  Hikers could potentially arrange transport by motor vehicle from the Heceta Head State Park parking lot through the tunnel to a pull-out area just after the tunnel, and from Bullard's Beach Statet Park across the bridge to some appropriately safe area along or off of Highway 101 south of the bridge itself.  Trail advocate, founder and director of the National Coast Trail Assocation, while thru-hiking the entire trail as a media event in 2008, purposely arranged transport at these two locations to highlight the fact that they pose a serious safety issue and that an appropriate trail solution needs to be developed and completed.  (NOTE: A "press-a-button" option has been added on both sides of the Coquille River Bridge, which allows cyclists and hikers the opportunity to trigger a flashing warning sign to alert motorists that there are either pedestrians or cyclists on the bridge and requiring them to decrease their speed limit.  However, given the narrow width of the bridge itself, while a cyclist has the potential to more quickly and thus more safely move across the bridge with the careful timing of oncoming traffic, this would be more difficult for a pedestrain, and therefore we still recommend NOT walking across the bridge.)

OPTION: PUBLIC BUS TRANSPORTATION - CARL WASHBURNE STATE PARK/FLORENCE.  There's a bus service offered that connects Florence and Yachats in both directions, here's the schedule and details.  This is a useful transportation option not only for hikers to avoid the Heceta Head Tunnel, but also, since the Oregon Coast Trail south of the tunnel is not yet complete -- and since stops include a grocery store (Grocery Outlet) in Florence, Oregon and a state park campground to the north of Heceta Head with a hiker/biker campsite, (Carl Washburne State Park) --  Since the Oregon Coast Trail south of the Heceta Head Lighthouse area is not yet complete, these stops allow a hiker to take the bus directly from this state park to Florence, resupply, and continue south. 

ISSUE: LANDSLIDES CREATE A BREAK IN THE OREGON COAST TRAIL, ARRANGING TRANSPORT FROM SEASIDE TO CANNON BEACH  RECOMMENDED, DETAILS BELOW.  This completed section of the Oregon Coast Trail has experienced landslides that closed a section of the Oregon Coast Trail in Spring 2018, with reopening scheduled for June 2020.  However, a landslide that not only damaged the park entrance road but also another trail section happened in early 2020.  What this means for a hiker, is that although one may still hike from the Tillamook Head Trailhead in Seaside to the Indian Beach area of Ecola State Park, access south is prohibited.  This is an incredibly beautiful section of the Oregon Coast Trail, and therefore worth hiking to Indian Beach and back to Seaside to experience it.  However, since it is officially closed, proceeding south would not be advised, especially in terms of potential safety issues and impacts to the natural environment. Details and further information below.


"General Advisory - Starting 05/16/2018 - Ecola Point to Indian Beach Trail CLOSED. This popular hike usually connects Ecola Point and Indian Beach day use areas. Excessive precipitation from the 2016-17 winter caused a large landslide that took out a critical section of trail, requiring a significant re-route. It is unknown at this time when that work will be completed. In the meantime, PLEASE do not attempt this trail by creating your own detour. Besides being potentially dangerous, user-created trails can cause serious damage to some of Oregon's most precious natural resources. Thank you for your consideration." Source: Oregon Parks & Recreation Department / Arranging a ride from the Indian Beach parking lot to the Ecola Point parking lot is recommended until the trail re-opens. NOTE: Although completion of this re-route was expected on or before June 15, 2020, the closure of Ecola State Park (see details below) has apparently kept this closure in effect until further notice.

2. EMERGENCY CLOSURE OF ECOLA STATE PARK.  Winter 2020. Ecola State Park is CLOSED due to failure of the main entrance road.  Crews are evaluating road damage, weather and soil conditions and repair options.  There is currently no timeline for reopening.

3. CRESCENT BEACH TRAIL CLOSED - "As of Feb. 12, Ecola State Park is closed until further notice south of Indian Beach Day-use Area. Recent landslides in the park have damaged the park entrance road, and wiped out about 100 feet of the Crescent Beach Trail.  Indian Beach Day-use Area remains open accessible via the Tillamook Head Trail; it's about a 6 mile hike into the park from the trailhead south of Seaside. View the park brochure for more info."  Source: Oregon Parks & Recreation Department

Tide Tables:
There are a number of creeks, streams and rivers to cross and points of rock to get around safely along the Oregon Coast Trail.  Knowing how to read a tide table is a crucial skill to have and it's essential to plan your trip's intineary not only in terms of the dates you will do it, but also on both a daily and next day level, since you may need to reach a certain place the day before to maximze your ability to reach a certain point the next day to make the tide level to pass a point or make a water crossing, too! Here are the Oregon Coast Tide Tables for 2020, and here's a smartphone version, too.

Itinerary: Oregon Coast Trail 31-Day Thru-Hike
Key: SP = State Park / HB = Hiker-Biker 
 1 - Fort Stevens SP HB Camp 11 - Fogarty Creek SP 21 - Sunset Bay SP HB Camp
 2 - Seaside Lodge & International Hostel
12 - Beverly Beach SP HB Camp 22 - Bullards Beach SP HB Camp
 3 - Ecola SP Tillamook Head Shelter Camp 13 - South Beach SP HB Camp 23 - BLM Designated Primitive Camp
 4 - Oswald West SP 14 - Beachside SP HB Camp 24 - Cape Blanco SP HB Camp
 5 - Nehalem Bay State Park HB Camp 15 - Cape Perpetua USFS Campground/
        Neptune SP
25 - Humbug Mountain SP HB Camp
6 - Barview Jetty County Campground 16 - Carl G. Washburne SP HB Camp 26 - Arizona Beach SP
 7 - Cape Meares SP 17 - Harbor Vista County Park 27 - Otter Point SP
 8 - Cape Lookout SP HB Camp 18 - Carter Lake USFS Campground  28 - Cape Sebastian SP
 9 - Webb County Campground 19 - Eel Creek USFS Campground 29 - Boardman SP
10 - Devils Lake SP HB Camp 20 - Bluebill USFS Campground 30 - Harris Beach SP HB Camp

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