Wildfire update. Guest Perspective with Kevin Price, Storm Watching & more
Wildfire update. Guest Perspective with Kevin Price, Storm Watching & more
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Image of waves at Cape Perpetua

February Featured Park: Cape Perpetua Scenic Area

Cape Perpetua Scenic Area in the Siuslaw National Forest is an amazing place to visit in any season. Winter, however, might be the best time to experience this 2,700-acre protected coastal area.

26 miles of hiking trails with amazing views offer visitors the opportunity to explore beaches and tidepools as well as magical old-growth forest. And if you would like to stay nearby, the Tillicum Beach Campground offers reservable camp sites, with water and electric, year-round, through recreation.gov (Cape Perpetua Campground is also nearby, open from Spring-Fall).

In the winter, impressive displays of crashing waves can be seen at Devil’s Churn, Cook’s Chasm, and Thor’s Well. If the tide is out, visit the marine garden, where sea stars, urchins, nudibranchs, and other sea life can be observed in this protected environment.

Among the most impressive sea creature to be seen from Cape Perpetua is the Grey Whale, which is often spotted from the beaches this time of year. Bring your binoculars and look for sprays from anywhere along the rocky intertidal areas surrounding the beach below the visitor’s center.

Cape Perpetua offers much more than the impressive cliffs and beaches. Away from the beaches, multiple trails run through an enchanting old-growth forest. Enjoy an easy 2-mile hike to see a 500-year old Sitka Spruce, or take a longer route like the Cummins Creek Loop Trail to experience both ancient forest and ocean views. Amanda’s Trail, a memorial to Amanda de Cuys and the forced relocation of Native Americans to the Siletz reservation, is currently under construction and multiple portions may be closed (re-opening anticipated by February 22, 2022).

Go to the Forest Service's Cape Perpetua web page to plan your trip in advance and download a trail map for the area.

Accessibility info: There are two wheelchair-accessible trails for Cape Perpetua Scenic that both connect to the visitor’s center, offering access to either Devil’s Churn or Cook’s Chasm. Parking areas are located at Devil’s Churn (not to be confused with Devil's Punchbowl further north), the visitor’s center, and Cook’s Chasm. A $5 day-use fee is required. The visitor’s center is currently closed, but restrooms and trails are open.

Accessible adventures has a video for Cape Perpetua.

Whale watching links:

Oregon Parks Forever Funds Replacement of More Than 500,000 Trees Killed By Wildfires And Excessive Heat

As of January 31, 2022, we have been able to fund the planting of 553,000 trees across the state at Collier State Park, Silver Falls State Park, the Ben & Kay Dorris State Recreation Area, North Santiam State Park, Cedar Butte, and in the Tillamook Forest – as well as parks in Josephine and Marion Counties.

Since the 1990’s, Oregon has seen significant increases in the number of acres burned statewide each year. 2020 saw the second largest number of acres burned since 1990 with more than one million acres of trees burned on Oregon lands. 2021 followed with a similarly devastating fire year, as well as a heat dome event that killed many trees in the Coast Range. 

This comes at a time when the budgets of public land managers are already stressed due to ongoing funding challenges and the COVID pandemic. We anticipate these devastating ramifications of climate change to continue in the future and want to be ready to help. Read the Full Article>

Building Bridges for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Oregon’s Parks

Kevin Price began helping to connect kids from Portland’s communities of color to the outdoors more than 25 years ago, while working for Oregon State Parks as a Region Manager.

 While in his role with Oregon State Parks, Price began leading field trips to the Columbia Gorge for students from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr Elementary School. Price has said, “There are people who come from around the world to visit some of these scenic areas, and we have people who live within 15 or 20 miles and they’ve never been”. One of the things that Price experienced both in his professional career and with the visitors to our scenic areas, was a lack of people of color. Of the students Price took to visit the Gorge, often only a couple of students out of a group of twenty to twenty-five had visited there before. Read the Full Article>

Storm Watching on the Oregon Coast

A volcanic eruption in Tonga last month resulted in a tsunami warning for the Oregon Coast, and a reminder to us all that the Ocean can be a dangerous place. It is this danger that is essential to its beauty, as millions of years of storms have carved out cliffs from the volcanic rocks, created tidepools, and ground stone into the fine sand, piled into dunes reaching miles inland.

Storm watching on the Oregon Coast is an opportunity to see the power of the ocean at work. Some of the most iconic images of the Oregon Coast today are of ocean sprays produced as the water connects with the rocks in places like Shore Acres, Devil’s Churn, and Tillamook Head. Read the Full Article>

Things to do this month

Celebrate Black History Month with a roadtrip. This Oregon Coast Visitors Association article highlights places on the Oregon Coast important to Black History in Oregon. 
Book tours for Fort Rock Cave and Kam Wah Chung Museum. Make reservations online at the Oregon State Parks for these historic sites and visit this summer!
Think about your Labor Day Camping Trip. With reservations for State Parks open 6 months in advance, it will soon be time to make those Labor-Day reservations.
With Sincere Gratitude,
Oregon Parks Forever is a statewide, member-supported nonprofit dedicated to raising funds to enhance and preserve special places and experiences in Oregon's parks. www.orparksforever.org.
Oregon Parks Forever
503-966-1283 | administrator@orparksforever.org.
1501 SW Jefferson St. Portland, OR 97201
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