Seaside Stories

Driving the Oregon Coast Highway

March 10, 2013 | by Jon Rahl

We regularly document what life is like in Seaside. From biking to hiking to crabbing or razor clamming, all the way down to sweets and treats or a world-class meal, we attempt to give a perspective on what you can do when visiting Seaside.

What we haven’t done is focus on what’s great about the trek to Seaside. Whether you are coming from the north or the south, Highway 101 – also known as the Oregon Coast Highway – is as varied as the activities in Seaside. Many spots along all 363 miles of Highway 101 are steep and rugged. Others are the epitome of a drive through a farming community with wide-open fields featuring horses, cows, sheep and other animals roaming freely.

There’s also the aspect of rivers and streams flowing into the Pacific Ocean, which serves as the ultimate boundary to this world-renowned highway. On Friday, while returning from a meeting on the Central Oregon Coast, I stopped at the viewing area for Barview Jetty County Park – a place I’d never been before – which intersects the inlet of Tillamook Bay with the Pacific Ocean. One great thing about driving the coast is that exploring something new and interesting is as easy as pulling off onto a lookout or clearly marked area. And many times you can take these short excursions in the span of 15 or 20 minutes.

Barview Jetty is located just northwest of Garibaldi, and in addition to another unique lookout along the coast that I captured in the photo seen here, it’s also open to camping (with 315 year-round sites), exploring and plenty of fishing.

What’s your favorite place to stop while driving to Seaside? Do you have a favorite lookout or maybe a restaurant that is a must stop? Tell us by commenting below.

Editor’s Note: As is always the case, please be cautious while exploring the waterways in the areas described above. Jetties also present rocks and boulders that can be dangerous so please be prepared with good shoes as you explore areas like this!

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