Trail Map Updated on 10/09/2021
The Oregon Coast Trail, aka OCT, is a 684 km long hike, following the coast of the western US state of Oregon from the south side of the mouth of the Columbia River, at the border with Washington state down to the California border south of Brookings. This Pacific coastline is simply stunning, with its lush interiors and gorgeous beaches. All of Oregon's 584 km of coastline are public, earning it the name of ‘The People’s Coast’. Along the way, you will traverse dramatic coastal headlands, walkthrough majestic forests and parks and pass through 28 coastal towns, typically a day’s hike apart.
An easy to moderate trail, most of the trail is on beaches, although some passes through state parks or public land and around 10% is on roads, namely US Highway 101 and city streets. Beware though, some Oregon beaches are protected nesting grounds for the Western Snowy Plover and between March 15 and September 15 hikers on protected beaches will have to walk on wet sand away from the nest sites. Dogs are also prohibited during these times, (even on a lead) and so are fires and camping on the beaches.
Finding accommodation en route is easy with state parks and campgrounds averaging out to around one every five miles and with hotels, air BnBs and guesthouses in the coastal towns, where you can resupply and rest. Booking may be required in busy times.
Due to prevailing winds which come from the north and are often strong enough to pick up sand, you should only hike the OCT southbound and do expect to have to do your own wayfinding sometimes using downloaded maps etc as the trail marking is sketchy at times.
For a spring/summer hike, temperatures should be warm, but winds and rain are common. The wildlife is abundant; expect to see deer, elk, eagles, sea lions, seals, dolphins and maybe even a whale on this hike. Bears are not a threat on the coast so you do not need a bear spray or canister.
You do need to know how to read tide tables for this hike and time your hike with the tides accordingly. Be aware of Sneaker waves, which carry large amounts of debris and sand. They are rogue waves and can be dangerous.