“My favorite hike is the Kinnikinnick Woods Loop at Sitka Sedge. My cousin and I used to race our horses on those trails when we were kids. I’m so fortunate that it is in my backyard so I still use it, but on my own two feet with my chocolate lab Huckleberry.” – Arica Sears, Deputy Director of the Oregon Coast Visitors Association
“Short Beach is one of my favorite spots to go hiking because It has an incredible view, it is close to my house and I can take my son to look for fossil rocks”
– Angelica Ortiz, National Diabetes Prevention Program Instructor, Tillamook County Family YMCA
“There are so many great hikes on the Oregon Coast and in Tillamook County alone. One of my personal favorites is Cape Falcon trail in Oswald State Park which is one of the last (northern) stops in Tillamook County. The hike is 2.4 miles out (4.8 roundtrip) to the top which brings you to a beautiful overlook spot of Short Sands beach. This hike can be pretty busy during the warmer months, I prefer to hike it early morning in fall or winter. There are lots of big roots on this trail, while it can be tempting to be on your phone to capture the beauty of this hike, its best to keep your eyes on the trail!”
– Shelby Porter, Public Health Program Representative at Tillamook County Community Health Center
“My favorite place? I do love the Neahkahnie Mtn hike. It’s very accessible and the view is unparalleled. I discovered it when I was a kid, exploring with my cousins who lived in Wheeler.”
– Jon-Paul Bowles, Executive Director of the Salmonberry Trail Foundation
“I love Bay Ocean Spit in Tillamook! It’s fun to walk all the way around and see the bay, the bar, and the ocean. Every time I go, it’s a little different. It’s also fun to see the perspective from the other side of the Tillamook Bay.”
– Kelly Benson, Sustainable Relationship for Community Health Coordinator, Tillamook County Family YMCA
“My top favorite is probably the Wilson River Trail: Kings Mtn Trailhead to Jones Creek Trailhead. It offers a great overview of what the Tillamook State Forest has to offer, this route takes you away from the river and the highway noise, leading you up into the greater Wilson River watershed and the Lester Creek valley, in particular. The route offers some rocky cliffs and outcroppings with fantastic views over the valley, as well as giving an opportunity to hike through several ecosystem types, including drier hillsides and wet red alder groves. You’ll feel truly alone out there, a least until you reach the Diamond Mill OHV Area. Crossing the Diamond Mill footbridge is a treat, as this wooden bridge is a beautiful work of art and showcases the gorgeous North Fork of the Wilson River. You also get a peek at the lovely Lester Creek waterfall on the other side of the river. Excellent in the rain or in the sunshine, this route is a challenge and a pleasure.” – Samantha Goodwin, NW Youth Corps, GIS Intern, U.S. Forest Service
If you decide to explore these hikes, consider going-off season or on a weekday to avoid over-crowding, remember to stay on the trail, leave wildlife wild, and pick up & carry your trash back out. It is important that we protect these spaces if we want to continue enjoying their beauty. And keep an eye out this summer for the launch of an interactive map of all the trails in Tillamook County on tillamookcoast.com.
For more local health and wellness information, follow Tillamook County Wellness on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, or go to www.tillamookcountywellness.org.