The Oregon Coast10 Must-See Spots Along the 101 & How They Could Kill You
“Steep cliffs, rogue waves, oceanic black holes — the real question is how couldn’t it kill you?”
These weren’t your standard soul-sucking, cheeto-finger, country-or-christian-radio six hour drives from the Cities to Bismarck or Madison. These days weren’t about driving to get somewhere, but about seeking out new, unanticipated destinations along the way. They were about taking the scenic route no matter how much time it added to our trip. That’s what road trips are all about, and that’s what this post is all about.1 One thing
Kylie absolutely hates about traveling with me is that I’m constantly researching the various ways our destinations could kill us: Grizzlies in the Tetons, a loose guard rail in Glacier, rogue waves in Tofino, falling off Angels Landing in Zion. I could go on and on… and I do. So much so that, without realizing it, I start to psyche Kylie out.
This is not my intent. I don’t actually think a scorpion will crawl into our tent and murder us when we’re camping in the middle of the Mojave, I just like to know the odds. Unfortunately, Kylie is too often the innocent bystander of this process. So, to make it up to her, I’m going to take it out on the internet instead.
Claim To Fame: Being the Longest Continuous Truss Bridge in North America. Not to mention cameos in Short Circuit, Kindergarten Cop, Free Willy, Free Willy 2, and The Goonies.
How It Could Kill You: Typhoons.
(Bonus) How It Could Kill You: Killer trees that spell your lady friend’s name.3
Claim To Fame: The Goonies.4
How It Could Kill You: Death by nostalgia (see above)
Claim To Fame: Cheese, mainly.
How It Could Kill You: The free cheese sample buffet could honestly kill you in a variety of ways.
Claim To Fame: Devils Punch Bowl.5
How It Could Kill You: Being there when the devil gets thirsty. Or Getting Punched by the devil. Open to interpretation.
Claim To Fame: Pristine hiking, whale watching, and first-class natural and historic gems such as Devil’s Churn, Thor’s Well, and the Cape Perpetua Shelter and Parapet.
How It Could Kill You: Steep cliffs, rogue waves, oceanic black holes — the real question is how couldn’t it kill you?
Claim To Fame: Named after businessman Carl Washburne, the land was gifted to the state by his wife Narcissa. Because women are the real heroes and dudes just like having their names on shit.
How It Could Kill You: Anything with the word ‘memorial’ in it can and likely will kill you.
Claim To Fame: The inspiration for Frank Herbert’s famous novel Dune, which was famously adapted to film in 1984 by David Lynch. Also: Dune-Buggy Heaven.
How It Could Kill You: Let’s see here…
Claim To Fame: Five acres of formal gardens boasting unique flowers, a rose-testing plot, and a Japanese lily pond.
How It Could Kill You: Listen, I’m not saying a rogue wave will hurl a giant gray whale the size of two at-capacity city buses from the ocean onto your otherwise perfectly healthy body while you take in the glorious seascape from atop the coastal cliffs… but you’d be lucky if it didn’t.
Claim To Fame: Among others, a few notables include:
1. Coquille River Light8
2. Devils Kitchen
3. Face Rock
- According to Nah-So-Mah legend, Face Rock is the face of Princess
MoanaEwauna. The daughter of a Chief, Ewauna loved the ocean so hard that she went and got herself drowned to death by Seatka, the Evil Spirt of the Sea.
How It Could Kill You:
(In corresponding order)
- While you’re out for a leisurely, late-night stroll on the beach, the lighthouse malfunctions and a ship barrels into land and you’re subsequently eviscerated by its shrapnel.
- The Devil, famished and ornery, heads to his kitchen for a bite to eat. Lo’ and behold, he finds you there, taking pictures of it. He’s understandably pretty pissed about this and, in turn, sentences you to eternal damnation.
- The Evil Spirit of the Sea will drown you and turn you into stone.
IFBandon is the explosive grande finale of this road trip, then Battle Rock is the quiet bonus where you can sit back, reflect, and say goodbye to this unforgettable stretch of land. A half hour from Face Rock and twice that to the California border, there’s no better spot to catch one last Oregon Coast sunrise.
Claim To Fame: In 1851, a group of settlers laid claim to this site without a treaty or any other sort of consultation with local natives. The natives resisted and attacked the settlers, who were equipped with a cannon. The result was a bloodbath in which dozens of natives were killed.
How It Could Kill You: Overdosing on white guilt.
Beverly Beach State Park, Newport, OR 97365
Scenery 3.5★: A pretty bland camp zone right off the highway. Salvaged only by the nearby beach and pretty cool bridge that makes the site fairly unique.
Accessibility 5★: It’s, like, right off the 101.
Activities 3★: Windier than shit so idk we just watched a movie. Walking under the bridge to the beach was both the bomb and phat, though.
Food/Bev 4.5★: There was a nearby Fred Meyer that sold chips, dip, and featured a very liberal intimacy aisle.
Price 3.5★: $21. Seemed steep at the time, but boy oh boy were we humbled when we got to California.
Overall Dopeness Rating: 3.9★
Redwood National Park
- And death. This post is also abut death
- and vice versa, obv
- Also Twilight, but Kylie won’t allow the two in the same sentence
- Which like Devils Tower, doesn’t use an apostrophe. SO DONT @ ME ABOUT IT
- why do i feel like the Price is Right announcer guy as i write this?
- Thanks, Wikipedia
- AKA Coquille River Lighthouse