Craggy bluffs, secluded beaches, and offshore rock formations await visitors along the 12 ocean-hugging miles of Samuel H Boardman State Scenic Corridor, located between Brookings and Gold Beach along Highway 101.
This stretch of the highway features one turnoff after another, each with access to picnic areas, viewpoints and trailheads that connect an 18-mile segment of the Oregon Coast Trail.
There are a couple of ways to experience this park: pick a trailhead and spend the day hiking one of the sections, or stop at each parking area and explore its features.
Here are some highlights to help plan your trip:
Cape Ferrelo Viewpoint: A mile-long hike leads to breathtaking views of the rugged coastline and photo-worthy Oregon sunsets. The Cape is also an excellent spot for whale watching in fall and spring.
House Rock Viewpoint: A memorial commemorates Samuel H. Boardman, the first Oregon State Parks superintendent and the park's namesake. The 4-mile trail between Cape Ferrelo and House Rock offers many side trails to secluded beaches.
Whaleshead Beach: This oceanfront picnic area has gorgeous views and an easy, flat path to the beach.
Natural Bridge: Follow a short trail to one of the best viewpoints in the park — the seven iconic arch rocks and blowholes known as Natural Bridges. Here you'll find a memorial to Dr. Samuel Dicken, who first envisioned the Oregon Coast Trail.
Arch Rock: From the paved parking lot, a short path leads to an overlook featuring a series of offshore sea stacks and islands.
Whether you hike all 18 miles or just 1/4 of a mile, take a moment to consider the multitudes who have walked the same worn path for millennia: Native Americans, explorers, gold seekers and settlers.
The land for this park was acquired mostly between 1949 and 1957 by purchase from private owners and the U. S. Bureau of Land Management. In 1950, Borax Consolidated, Ltd., of London, England, gave 304.10 acres for the park and 62.90 acres for right-of-way on the relocated Oregon Coast Highway. Many of the tracts had arrangements for the removal of timber and some for sheep grazing. Samuel H. Boardman (1874-1953), the first Oregon State Parks superintendent, served from 1929 to 1950. He conceived the idea of a great coastal park in Curry County and worked tirelessly to acquire the present park lands. In the early 1940s, Boardman approached U. S. Department of the Interior Secretary Harold L. Ickes with a proposal for an extensive National Park area along the Curry County coastline. Though federal officials toured the region, the coastal National Park idea did not take hold. This state park, the nugget of Boardman's proposal, was named in tribute to the founding superintendent at the time of his retirement. A commemorative monument was dedicated at House Rock View Point on August 7, 1970.