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Heceta Head Lighthouse State Scenic Viewpoint

Heceta Head State Park (which includes Devils Elbow State Park) is located in a cove at the mouth of Cape Creek. There are picnic tables sheltered from the wind and a great view of the ocean. A short trail leads to the historic Heceta Head lighthouse and lighthouse keeper's house. A recently-completed trail gives you a spectacular view of the coast north to Cape Perpetua.

Heceta Head trail is part of a 7-mile network. Trails of varying difficulty feature beach and wildlife viewing areas. Wildlife refuge islands feature a view of puffins, cormorants, gulls, and other bird nesting areas. Sea lions and whales can be seen from the beach and cliff-top lighthouse.

On the west side of 1,000-foot-high Heceta Head, 205 feet above the ocean, the lighthouse is one of the most photographed on the coast. The light at top of 56-foot tower was illuminated in 1894; the automated beacon, seen 21 miles from land, is rated as the strongest light on the Oregon coast. The historic assistant lighthouse keeper’s house (Heceta House; built 1893) offers bed and breakfast rentals and facilities for group events; call (541) 547-3696 for info.

Common murres, which lay their eggs on the bare rocks, can be easily seen by looking down, just over the railing near the lighthouse. Brown pelicans commonly fly by, as do bald eagles. Migrating gray whales can be seen as they travel to and from Alaska and Baja California. May is a great time to look right down on the migrating mothers and calves as they travel close to shore.

There are natural caves, tidepools, a sandy beach for building sandcastles, and good conditions for surfing. There are plenty of picnic tables for groups and areas to set up volleyball nets.

Lighthouse Tours
March-April 2005 -- Thursday-Friday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
May-September, 2005 -- Daily, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
August 6-14 is Oregon Lighthouse Week
Night Tours -- May 28; June 4; July 2; Aug. 6, 9, 11 and 13; and Sept. 4

For more information, call (541) 547-3416. Please call to arrange group tours. There is no charge for tours, but donations for restoration projects are gladly accepted. The lighthouse observation area open all year during park hours.

Tidepool Tours
Summer Kickoff Event, June 24-26
July 1-Sept. 4, tidepool naturalist available. Groups may call (541) 547-3416 to schedule tidepool activities.

Services and Things to Do

  • Picnicking
  • Wildlife watching
  • Bird watching
  • Marine mammal watching
  • Native plant
  • Hiking trail
  • Special events
  • Interpretive events
  • Forest
  • Waterways
  • Marine
  • Beach
  • Historic resources
  • Lighthouses
  • Historic signs
  • Interpretation
  • Interpretive tours
  • Interpretive signs
  • Year-round
  • Restrooms

Park rates (subject to change)
May 1 to September 30
Daily day use: $3
Yearly day use: $25
October 1 to April 30 (Discovery Season)
Daily day use: $3
Yearly day use: $25

US 101, 13 mi. N of Florence

Get driving directions to this park

Vital stats
$3 daily day-use fee or buy a 12-month permit for $25, or a 24-month permit for $40. These 1- and 2-year permits are good at all state park day-use areas. The day-use fee is waived for visitors with a current state park camping receipt. Call 1-800-551-6949 for information.

Information provided by Oregon State Parks


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