Cascade Head Hike Oregon - Exploring My Life

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Cascade Head Hike Oregon

Cascade Head Oregon - Siuslaw National Forest

The Cascade Head hike really has everything we would ever want out of a coastal hike. we can walk through old growth coastal forest and thick undergrowth sometimes filled with rare flowers, there is a chance we’ll see some coastal wildlife, and we’ll get some of the best views of the coast you can find. 
Cascade Head Trail Oregon
Salmon River Estuary Cascade Head
Oregon Cascade Head Hike
This is one of the truly amazing places on the Oregon Coast. It has spectacular views and his home to an endangered species of butterfly and at least two rare plants.

Cascade Head’s panoramic, bluff-top wildflower meadows were threatened by commercial development in the 1960's, but fans of the wild headland rallied to purchase the fragile area and donate it to the non-profit Nature Conservancy for preservation. Ironically, the impact of up to 10,000 nature-loving visitors a year now threatens the meadows’ ecology.

Hike Description:  The hike has recently been extended when the trail-head was moved south to Knight Park. The first part of trail is rather ho-hum as you walk a path of wood shavings scant feet from Three Rocks Road. Cross the road and you'll find the path headed north on the shoulder of Savage Road. The trail dips from the road for a bit onto a wooden bridge, then parallels the road through the trees. At the crest of a hill the path crosses the road and becomes the west shoulder of the road. A sign at the bottom of the hill marks the original trail head, where the trail leaves the road for good.

·         Start point: Cascade Head Lower Trail head
·         Hike Type: Out and back or Traverse with Car Shuttle
·         Distance: 6.8 miles round trip (3.4-mile traverse)
·         Elevation gain: 1310 feet
·         Difficulty: Moderate

With the roadside hike done, then we climb through an old growth coastal forest. Doug fir and spruce dominate the area. And the area is marked as National Forest land. 
Cascade Head Meadows
Cascade Head Nature Conservancy Hike
Cascade Head Three Rocks Nature Conservancy
The trail crosses a couple of small streams on new bridges, then enters a virtual tunnel of undergrowth. At the edge of the Nature Conservancy land, then we enter to the meadows. The views are immediately tremendous to the south. The Salmon River Estuary dominates an ocean view that extends to Lincoln City. The trail traverses along the ridge at about the 500-foot level, finally coming to a view north, down a cliff to the Pacific. From there, the trail switches back to begin climbing the slope. After several switchbacks, it levels out somewhat at the 1200-foot level at an upper viewpoint.

This headland meadow is a very rare ecosystem. There are two rare plants that call this hill home, the Cascade Head Catch-fly (silene douglasii var oraria) and the Hairy Stemmed Checker-mallow (sidalcea hirtipes). 
Cascade Head Hike Siuslaw National Forest
Cascade Head Hike Oregon

Directions: The Cascade Head spans between south of Neskowin, Oregon to the junction of Highway 18 and Highway 101.
Cascade Head Lower Trail-head, is just before Lincoln City, take US 101 north for about a mile to Three Rocks Road. Turn left here and drive for about two miles until you get to Knights Park. The parking area will be on the left.

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