#26 in the Coast Book, February 10, 2010; Moderate – 4.8 miles round trip, 400 feet elevation gain.
It was a terrible, typically wet and dreary February day (unlike the day before) but I still needed to get out and be active. Let’s drive to the beach! Meg and I (Becky) drove through the rain into even more rain to Cape Lookout State Park, about 16 miles outside of Tillamook. The impressive Cape juts 2 miles into the Pacific Ocean and offers 3 different hikes. We chose the longest, out to the tip of the cape.
The trail descends through the dense forest of gnarled spruce and hemlock. It was an absurd day to go, and we slipped and slid around in the mud and along the boardwalks. The trees offered a bit of shelter from the wind and rain, but as you round the edge of the cape you are open to the elements. Adventure portion of this hike: attempting to not get blown off the side of the cliff-face.
We did make it to the tip (and back), but we just have this one grainy picture taken with a phone. It was so wet and windy that we climbed into a bush to get one small visual record.
I have to say that I have done this hike in the summer before and found it delightful. I would recommend not going when it’s pouring buckets and cold. Bonus adventure portion: on the way back into Tillamook from the cape we spotted a lonely little BBQ joint in the middle of Whiskey Creek Road on the Netarts Bay. The friendly proprietor of the Whiskey Creek BBQ & Grill moved a table in front of the fireplace and proceeded to wow his wet clientele with seriously good eats.
Notes: Open year-round, but go when it’s dry, you’ll have a better experience. The nearby Cape Lookout State Park Campground is one of my favorites on the coast. Not recommended for most dogs or really small children due to the portions along the cliff-side with no barriers.