The North Oregon Coast is a popular destination for residents of both Oregon and Washington. The area designated from Pacific City to Astoria has rocky coastlines, hundreds of years of history, lighthouses, and plenty of recreational opportunities. Movies like The Goonies, Kindergarten Cop, Point Break, Free Willy, Short Circuit, and Twilight were filmed here. Several beaches offer great walks, clam digging, surfing, and whale watching. The rivers and inlets are favorite spots for fishing and kayaking. The smalls towns offer plenty of culture with their world-class restaurants, microbreweries, antique shops, museums, and landmarks. Visit the Oregon Coast website for more on how to spend a vacation in the area.
The marine climate allows optimal trail running all year round. The Oregon Coast Trail is connected by many trails winding on the beach, coastal forests, and some roads, including HWY 101. Most trails are maintained by the Oregon Coast Trail Foundation, Trailkeepers of Oregon, Northwest Coast Trails Coalition, and North Coast Trail Alliance. Storms frequently knock trees down on the trails, so it’s best to check the state park’s website before adventuring at the coast.
North Oregon Coast Trail Runs
Ecola State Park is located in between Cannon Beach and Seaside. The trails pass through Indian Beach and over Tillamook Head.
Neakanie Mountain is a trail north of Manzanita. At the top of the mountain is a spectacular view of Nehalem Bay.
Oswald West State Park offers 13 miles of trails through temperate rain forests and views of Short Sands Beach, a popular surfing spot, Cape Falcon, and Arch Cape.
Lewis and Clark National Park is a great way to mix history and trails. In fact, it’s the end of the country’s most historical trail! Fort Clatsop offers trails that run from the Lewis & Clark River to Sunset Beach.
Fort Stevens in Hammond is a historic military site with nine miles of bicycle trails and 6 miles of unpaved hiking trails. After the run, enjoy the swimming hole or a stroll on the beach next to the shell of a beached ship.
Ultimook 50k & 30k is a race put on by Ultimook Track Club that traverses abandoned logging roads, traveled & crafted over time by wild elk & other wildlife. It summits three coastal peaks–Stanley Peak, Top of the World #1, and Top of the World #2–and race along the Tillamook Ridge.
Bivouac Racing’s other North Oregon Coast trail race is the Battle to the Pacific, which takes place at Fort Stevens. The 5k, 10k, and Half Marathon are run on trails on lakes and beaches in the state park.
The North Coast race of Daybreak Racing’s Oregon Coast Trail Series also uses the trails at Fort Stevens.
Trail Running Groups
Cannon Beach Tide Striders has both a Facebook page and a Strava group page. According to Cannon Beach trail runner and coach Cameron Francey, the group will start doing more runs together when the COVID pandemic allows it.
Pelican Brewery has three locations along the North Oregon Coast in Pacific City, Tillamook, and Cannon Beach. The Pacific City location offers outstanding views of Cape Kiwanda. Pelican brews several award-winning ales and rotates many flavors on tap.
Fort George Brewing is built in the same location as the original Fort George in Astoria. Fort George brews four beers year-round, plus seasonal beers and some specialty brews. Grab some pizza and enjoy the views of the through windows overlooking the river or relax with a burger in the courtyard.
Buoy Beer is in a former cannery building right on the Columbia River in Astoria with views of the Astoria Megler Bridge. Buoy is known for its Czech Pilsner and fresh seafood.
Public Coast Brewery is close to Ecola State Park in Cannon Beach. The outdoor seating is nice for people watching on a sunny day.
San Dune Pub has been around since 1935. Located in Manzanita and close to the start of the Neahkanie Mountain trail, it has local beers, food, and a nice backyard patio.
Seaside Brewing in Seaside is known for its BBQ and live music.
Werner Beef and Brew in Tillamook started as a meat snack company and then started brewing beer. Werner has a deli and taproom located right across from Goodspeed Park.