Cape Lookout

AreaOregon Coast - Northern
Best time to visitMid-May through June
Blooming NowUnknown
Elevation400-800 feet
Trail Info5 miles round-trip, 400 feet elevation loss/gain
 Hike information - Oregon Hikers Field Guide
DogsAllowed, but must be kept on leash AT ALL TIMES.

NOTE: The blue marker indicates the trailhead.


Cape Lookout is a geological artifact from the Columbia River basalt flow dating back 15.5 million years. It stretches two miles westward into the Pacific Ocean. During the fall and spring you may see gray whales as they migrate between Alaska and Mexico.

The trail passes through a beautiful forest of old-growth Sitka Spruce, which can only be found near the coast. Along the trail you will find copious forest wildflowers, including candyflower (Claytonia sibirica), False Lily-of-the-Valley (Maianthemum dilatatum), Salmonberry (Rubus spectabilis), Fairy Lanterns (Prosartes smithii), Goatsbeard (Aruncus dioicus), Salal (Gaultheria shallon), and Monkeyflower (Mimulus guttatus). At various points along the trail you will also have fine views of the Oregon Coast, both north toward Cannon Beach and Neahkahnie Mountain, and south to Cape Kiwanda and Cascade Head.

On the steep hillsides near the end of the trail (and the cape itself), you will see Indian Paintbrush (Castilleja hispida), Spring Gold (Lomatium utriculatum), Yarrow (Achillea millefolium), and Douglas' Catchfly (Silene douglasii). Feast your eyes as you listen to the seagulls cackling below you.


Take Highway 101 north of Lincoln City to the town of Beaver. Approximately 3.4 miles north of Beaver (or approximately 11 miles south of Tillamook), turn west onto Sand Lake Road. Proceed 4.3 miles to a three-way stop. Continue straight another 3.3 miles, and turn left at the sign for Cape Lookout trailhead parking.

Walk to the far end of the parking lot and start walking on the Cape Trail. NOTE: Even though there are boardwalks along parts of the trail, there can be still be some extremely muddy sections so I recommend hiking boots.

Trip Reports

DateSubmitted by
Reports from previous years
06/03/2017Greg Lief
06/15/2008Greg Lief
05/27/2007Greg Lief

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