Sunset Bay to Cape Arago

December 13, 1980

Sunset Bay and Cape Arago arc both Oregon State Parks south of Charleston. Between these two spots are the 70-year old Simpson Botanical Gardens at Shore Acres, formerly the estate of lumberman Louis Simpson, now also an Oregon park. The entire area is a level marine terrace with an uneven and dramatically changing coastline. This makes an easy four-mile hike along the ocean with numerous geological points of interest.

Our 18 hikers left Eugene on slippery, frozen roads and found the balmy, nearly windless weather at the coast to be quite a treat. The ocean was very quiet and the pace was leisurely. Just before coming to Shore Acres we observed a good number of cormorants on the rocks. Later, getting close to Cape Arago, we first heard, then saw, a group of basking seals.

Four drivers hiked back to Sunset Bay at a speedy rate, while most of us hiked back along as far as the gardens. Our concern was to move along home without lingering too long since the drive was 125 miles each way. Since the area is so interesting, most of us agreed that staying overnight, as Lewinsohns did, would be worthwhile in future trips.

The December 13 hikers included Doris Allen, Joan Benson, Dallas Cole, Jane and Mike Hackett, Joanne Haines, Karen Houglum, Becky Kurtz, Betty Legris, Joe Lowry, Cynthia, Peter & Mark Lewinsohn, Glenn Meares, Henrietta Richmond, Robin Steussy, Charlene Simpson, and leader Emmy Dale.

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