Backpacking the Oregon Coast Trail: Creative Camping, Hiking – The Register-Guard | Gmx Pharm

William L Sullivan

Where can you hike in August when all else fails? You still want stunning scenery and solitude, but what if parts of Oregon are on fire, it’s 100 degrees in the Willamette Valley, and you don’t have the permits you would need for one of your favorite spots in the Cascades?

The answer is to hike a section of the Oregon Coast Trail. This 362-mile route isn’t quite complete yet, so about 40 miles still follow the shoulder of US Highway 101. Still, you can hike 60 miles from the Columbia River to Tillamook, eat at chowder restaurants, and stay in Airbnbs. Or you can backpack 40 miles through the Oregon Dunes from Florence to Coos Bay and camp in the sand every night. At least 200 miles of the track is on sand. Camping on the beach is legal outside of city limits and state parks.

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