If the world of J.R.R Tolkien entices you, hiking the trails along the Oregon Coast will feel magical. The trail called "Hobbit Trail" will cover a trek through old-growth forests, beaches, lighthouses, and gorgeous views in abundance. A moderate trek taking you through moss covered forest of Sitka spruce and rhododendrons, hobbit hollows and tunnels, this beautiful hike from Hobbit Holes To Hobbit Beach and later to Heceta Head Lighthouse can lead to a perfect outing.
About the Hobbit Trail, Oregon
This short hiking trail through a forest to the beach is at Carl G. Washburne Memorial State Park, north of Florence. Being around 5.2 miles out and back with the hike of Heceta Head Lighthouse included, it's the southernmost trail. Also, the beach at the end of Hobbit Trail has been a part of the Cape Perpetua Marine Reserve. Starting from Highway 101, the trail is an entirely dense forest morphing into sand floored tunnels, with Hobbit Beach and finally, Heceta Head Lighthouse. Winding through a thick forest covered with thick foliage, mushrooms and moss, emerges a thick, dark tunnel of trees. Mostly, it is lined with sitka spruce, bushy salal and rhododendrons, laced with twisted shrubs in between. On misty mornings, not only the hike resembles the Lord of The Rings movie but also the beach. Also, as one walks one mile from the beach, Carl G. Washburne State Park arrives where plenty of restrooms, campground and parking lot is available.
Why Is It Called Hobbit Trail
Around two miles from Washburne, there is an inconspicuous parking lot on the east side of the highway beckoning Hobbit Trail. The trek derives its name as "Hobbit Trail" owing to the distinctive tunnel-like earthen walls which envelops upon one's descent. Wandering amidst this trail to the beach, there are eccentric structures in the form of rock piles, rock gardens, sculptures in sand, runes or artists scrawlings on cliffs which exudes the feeling that this place was occupied by gnomes. Seemingly, as the human beings encroached, they scurried away. This mesmerizing trail winds up at Heceta Head Lighthouse eventually. Also, one lands up at another trail called "China Creek Trail" after a mile. This trail was built by officials that descends downhill gradually and named as Hobbit Trail in honor of the books by J.R.R Tolkien.
About Heceta Head Lighthouse
The iconic Heceta Head Lighthouse, one of the prominent features at the end of Hobbit Trail, is a 56 foot tower built in 1894. As it can oversee 21 miles from the land, it is deemed as the strongest light on the Oregon coast. The lighthouse viewpoint is popular for spotting Wales during winter migration as well as unique species of birds. Behind this lighthouse, continues the Heceta Lighthouse Trail which is a part of Oregon Coast Trail. After completing the dense forest views, hikers get a chance to view gorgeous ocean views. Things To Do At Oregon Coast As the Hobbit Trail emerges to a Hobbit Beach, the Oregon coast has incredible experiences such as Devil's Churn, Cape Perpetua, Thor's Well, Sea Lion's Caves, Carl.G. Washburne Memorial State Park and few other moderate hikes as well apart from Hobbit Trail.
A scenic spot on the Oregon coast located in the Siuslaw National Forest, it is prominent for its marine life. This place is 800 feet above sea level giving a panoramic gorgeous coastal view. Having incredible rock formations, sinkholes, high fissures, mesmerizing trails along, tide pools, it also has plenty of camping options.
An old sea cave at Cape Perpetua resembles an endless sinkhole with a huge flow of water churning around Thor's Well, a natural hole on the Oregon coast. This site seems to be most spectacular at high tides when a stunning fountain is created of the aggressive waters.
A terrifying natural wonder located on Oregon's central coast and north of Cape Perpetua, has been created by a fissure in the volcanic rock that was worn away for thousands of years. Waves crash back and forth into the 80 foot wide chasm & conjures stunning displays of scenic views.
Carl.G. Washburne Memorial State Park
A campground located on the east side of Highway 101 with almost 54 campsites, it has several hiking trails, wildlife viewing spots, thick forests, outdoor activities such as fishing, hiking, swimming, water sports, wildlife viewing as well as historic sites.
Sea Lion's Caves
Along the Highway 101 of Oregon coast lies the well preserved sea lions cave, also deemed as America's largest sea cave. It is not a zoo but a privately owned wildlife preserve. With a 125 foot natural rock dome, here sea lions and their cubs take shelter each year. It is a great example of responsible wildlife tourism
How To Reach
One can drive north on US Highway 101 for 12 miles, if you are coming from Florence. If one is coming from Yachats, you will go 15 miles south on Highway 101. A roadside parking can be seen from Heceta Head Lighthouse Scenic State Viewpoint.