Over the course of three days we saw eight of the nine lighthouses that the state of Oregon owns. They are all run by state or county parks and, except for the ninth and final one which we did not visit or get to photograph, are pretty easily accessible. Terrible Tilly, the ninth lighthouse, is 1.2 miles offshore and the viewpoint that we went to did not allow us to see it as it was too foggy and cloudy. But we tried.
Above, the first of the eight lighthouses – Cape Blanco Light surrounded by fog.
Bandon Light in Bandon, Oregon. This particular lighthouse resides inside of a state park that we did not visit. We were driving through on the scenic drive from Bandon to Charleston. It’s a small but cute lighthouse and if the weather had been better we would have gone over for a tour.
The third lighthouse, Point Arago Light, is not accessible by land and is only maintained as part of a state park. We went to a viewing area about a 1/4 mile away and looked at it across the water. It looked like it might rain any moment, and sure enough, as soon as we got back into the car it started raining. Luckily by the time we got to the next lighthouse it had stopped.
Our fourth stop on day 48 was for the Umpqua Lighthouse in Winchester Bay. This lighthouse is still maintained by the Coast Guard and tours are offered but they were closed and we kept moving. One more light house to do today!
Before stopping at Heceta Head we pulled over at a view point to take some photos of the lighthouse from far away. Lucky for us we could also see/hear/smell a group of sunbathing sea lions on the rocks below us. The hearing and seeing them is fun, but the smelling not so much.
On day 49 we got a little bit of sun and decided to stop at the Yaquina Bay Lighthouse in Newport, Oregon after visiting the aquarium. This is literally a light on top of a house. You can walk around inside, the house is a museum and you can see what it was like for the lighthouse keepers and their families over 100 years ago. Unfortunately you cannot go to the top of the lighthouse, that is closed to the public.
After waking up to more fog on day 50 we stopped at the Yaquina Head Lighthouse on our way out of Newport, Oregon. It was very foggy – we couldn’t see more than 100 yards. The lighthouse was open for tours and I went up to the top, but I couldn’t see much of anything because of the fog. Too bad.
The last of the eight lighthouses, Cape Meares Lighthouse, we visited in the fog. This lighthouse is a mere 38 feet tall, less than half the size of most of the other lighthouses we’ve seen in Oregon. It is this small because it sits on a cliff 217 feet above the ocean. Lighthouses have to be tall enough to be seen but not too tall as to be hidden in the fog.
Three days, lots of fog and lots of lighthouses. Yeah for Oregon!