Spring Break – Hiking Like Hobbits

Our guest blogger, Kathy, has been continuing her 2014 resolution to try a new hike every month. Here’s her latest adventure:

A Hobbit-worthy trail

A Hobbit-worthy trail

Have you ever passed by a random spot on the highway with a lot of cars parked but no people in sight? Chances are, it’s a trailhead. There’s a spot just south of Carl G. Washburn State Park on the Oregon Coast that my family and I have passed countless times, but this time, while at the coast for Spring Break, we finally took the opportunity to stop (being on vacation was no excuse for skipping my monthly hiking goal). Sure enough, there were trail heads on both sides of the road, and as we were told by another hiker, dubbed the Hobbit Trail.

“I wonder why they call it the Hobbit Trail,” my daughter Sarah asked, as we were putting on our hiking shoes. As we all came up with our various theories, but it wasn’t until we hit the trail that we began to understand. We chose the trail on the west site of the highway, thinking the trail might meander its way to the Ocean. Instead, it headed up hill, through lush, green woodlands, definitely Hobbit-worthy, toward the north side back site of Heceta Head. Being spring, there were a few challenging spots where the rain had turned the trail into a nice bog that only a true hobbit, with his oversize bare feet, could appreciate. But at the top, we were treated with a beautiful vista of the beach—a perspective of Carl G. Washburn beach that we hadn’t experienced before.

View of Carl G Washburn beach

View of Carl G Washburn beach

Since the trek was short (you can continue on around the bluff to Heceta Head Light House) we decided to turn back and try the trail on the east side of the highway. After a short distance, you come upon a meadow that opens onto a pond, providing a great spot for a snack (or second breakfast for hobbits). We continued on, and again found ourselves surrounded by just about every hue of green, including some areas completely carpeted with moss. Just beyond, we came upon more ponds, and a particularly pungent smell—ah, skunk cabbage in bloom. Spring was definitely a good time to experience this trail.

All in all—the hike was just enough to make us feel like we got some exercise, without being hard core, and we all now have the impression of what it must be like to be a Hobbit on the Oregon Coast. A perfect vacation hike experience.

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