One of the few hikes in Oregon that starts high and descends to its turnaround point, this 5-miler drops to an oceanside overlook with incredible views. From the trailhead, head southwest past hemlocks and Sitka spruces, the largest spruce species in the world. After 0.6 mile, the route passes a plaque honoring the 1943 crew of a crashed B-17; look left for great ocean views.
From here, the sometimes-muddy path continues southwest, passing lush green plants that grow on the massive trunks of the Sitka spruces. After 1.5 miles, stop to check out the inspiring vista above a cove, then continue on—an even better viewpoint awaits 1 mile farther. The trail reaches Cape Lookout Point at mile 2.5. Watch for gray whale spouts off the cape near the lighted buoy. (Calves are sometimes spotted directly below point.) Sea lions and bald eagles are a common sight, too. After the nature show, return to trailhead.
-Mapped by Joe Kurmaskie
TO TRAILHEAD: US 26 W to OR 6 W. In Tillamook, turn L onto Main Ave. (US 101 S), then R onto 3rd St. (Netarts Hwy.), following signs to Cape Lookout State Park. From park gate, continue 2.7 mi. to trailhead on R.