Last year we zipped down the coast of Washington and Oregon, hardly having time to look. This year we decided to spend two days in Florence, a small town on the Siuslaw River at the ocean. North of town (13 mi.) is a gem of a lighthouse, that the fog prevented us from seeing in the long view. This is last year’s picture.
This year we made the short climb up.
We easily found it off the Oregon Coast Hwy. With a small beach and parking lot below the bridge over Cape Creek, the lighthouse keeper’s place shone bright on this intermittent foggy morning.
Past the bathrooms is the trailhead up to the lighthouse. It offered a wide even path. Not too steep.
From the lighthouse keeper’s building (available for events and bed & breakfast rentals) the fog cleared enough to see the lighthouse. Built in 1893. Electrified in 1940. Fully automated in 1963. And the brightest light on the Oregon Coast.
Actually it’s the assistant lightkeeper’s house that remains – but looks beautiful. Imagine the family life in this setting.
The bridge across Cape Creek opened in 1932 (another thing to imagine about the lightkeeper’s life – this was some independent living) and resembles a Roman aqueduct.
I’m ready to visit again. You?
Words by Lynn Millar, pictures by Lynn & Mike Millar, available upon request.
Minimal Trail info: Near the lighthouse was a sign warning of bears and showing a trail map. It’s only a half mile up to the lighthouse – but other trails leave from here. 1.25 mi gets you to a trail with a connection down to Washburne Beach which is 2 miles long. The main trail continues through the hills to two more connections to the beach. I’m going to assume it’s a bit of a hike to get up and over the head and a couple of miles north. Lighthouse is 250′ above the ocean.
Oregon State Park: Day use is $5/vehicle or state pass, tours are 11-3 when weather and staffing permit, picnic tables, pit toilet and no water.