Blackrock Point (Oregon Coast) 11-Aug-2021

Our second hike on the Oregon Coast brought us back to Blackrock Point, which we’d first hiked in the winter of 2017. At that time, we came at it from the end of the road next to the Cape Blanco airport – the shortest way to the Point. This time we did a lollipop loop starting from the north at Boice-Cope County Park on Floras Lake. There was a bit of beach walking involved but the wind had calmed considerably overnight, so it wasn’t the struggle it was yesterday at Umpqua Dunes.

We parked at Boice-Cope ($5 day use fee) and went around the north side of Floras Lake and out on to the beach. By doing so, we were taking an alternative, and slightly confusing, path to the start of the trail to the Point. We went south along the beach until we came upon an Oregon Coast Trail (OCT) sign that seemed to be pointing toward an impenetrable wall of coastal vegetation. But a trail appeared as we got closer to the veg and that trail took us up to the end of an old road atop the shallow ridge. This old road took us south and then west past the end of the Cape Blanco airport runway to a junction with the spur trail out to the Point.

Passing Floras Lake on the way to the beach
South along the beach
Fivefinger Cinquefoil
On the old road
A colonnade of coastal trees
The old road hacks its way through thick coastal brush
I am not a stick
On the spur trail to the Point

After a walk through the forest, we burst out into the open on the headland that is Blackrock Point. To the south is Cape Blanco and the mouth of the Sixes River, which we hiked in 2019. The lighthouse is just visible near the west end of the cape and stands out best when its light flashes directly at you.

Looking south toward the Cape Blanco Lighthouse (arrow)
A spot of light from the lighthouse
Blackrock Point, with Tower Rock in the distance
Tower Rock hosts seabirds and lots of guano
The spine of land that is Blackrock Point
Looking north from the Point

After a snack at the Point, we took the spur trail back to the Oregon Coast Trail (OCT) and went north on that. The outbound part of this hike was buried in trees but our return along the OCT brought us past a number of excellent viewpoints – many on the crumbly edges of steep cliffs.

Starting our return
On the OCT
Looking south toward Blackrock Point and Tower Rock
Looking north
Waves
Mushroom

If you start from Floras Lake, but stay on the beach, you’ll eventually be headwalled where the Point juts out into the ocean. We suppose you could get around the Point at low tide but it looks like a tedious and somewhat treacherous hike. Most people stop where the beach ends, look at the waterfall, and go back the way they came.

Where the beach ends at the waterfall (arrow)
Waterfall
Continuing along the OCT
Through another colonnade of trees

The OCT eventually took us back to the OCT part of the old road we came in on. But at the end of that old road, where we’d joined it from the beach, we kept going straight north on a trail. This brought us out above Floras Lake on the inside of the coastal berm. We followed this “inside” trail past the lake and around to the trailhead.

At the end of the old road – coastal berm ahead, Floras Lake on the right
Back around the lake
Floras Lake

At 8.8 miles (14.2 km), with 300 feet (91 m) of gain, this was the longest hike of the three we did at the coast. It was also the most varied, what with stretches of coastal brush and forest mixed with big views from the Point and the OCT. Although there was a slight hint of smokey haze in the air, the day was otherwise cool and sunny, with only a light wind. A good time was had by all. 😁

Our loop to and from the Point; (1) is where the trail from the beach intersects the trail from inside the berm
Sunset at Bandon
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4 comments

  1. Snake looks like (appropriately enough!) an Oregon gartersnake (Thamnophis atratus hydrophilus). They apparently can dive into water to escape detection!

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  2. Great post. Love the pictures of costal walks…I’ve done very few of those but always enjoy them.

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