Cape Falcon (August 2)

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Splintercat
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Joined: May 28th, 2008, 10:03 pm
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Cape Falcon (August 2)

Post by Splintercat » August 29th, 2021, 5:09 pm

Did a rare summer hike on the coast during one of our heat waves earlier this month when temps on Mount Hood were forecast to be in the upper-80s... too warm for me! Took the Cape Falcon Trail from the north trailhead at Oswald West State Park to the cape viewpoint and a bit further beyond along the Coast Trail to a pocket view of the true Cape Falcon. Lovely trail, lots of roots! As I've said before, the coast has two hiking seasons: mud and roots! But I'll take roots over mud any day. :)

The old growth Sitka Spruce forests along this trail are quite beautiful right out of the gates. After a short walk along a canyon wall, the trail comes to this junction, where I turned right and headed out to the cape.

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Soon, view of Short Sand Beach open up through the trees as the trail heads out onto the cape, proper.

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If this trail were a ship, it would be named the S.S. Rooty McRootypants... :lol:

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After some very pretty traverses through ancient forests, the trail abruptly reaches salal thickets. The good news? OPRD (or perhaps volunteers?) have recently trimmed the route here -- especially help in rainy weather, when pushing through Salal can really soak you to the skin...

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Salal berries in peak form -- edible, but sort of mealy to my taste. Maybe in a jam?

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Looking south from Cape Falcon across Smuggler Cove toward Neahkahnie Mountain:

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There's a really cool, not-so-recent landslide along the south wall of Smuggler Cove:

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Head north from the Cape Falcon viewpoint spur and the Salal gets thick FAST... but there's a neat pocket view of the westernmost extent of Cape Falcon along this part of the Coast Trail if you're willing to go out on a very large Sitka Spruce limb... :D

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Watch your step on this trail -- including on that last pocket view -- there are huge drop-offs concealed by the dense undergrowth. I saw a couple people with off-leash dogs. Against the regs, of course, but also just a bad idea here due to the exposure.

-Tom :)

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