Sunset Bay to Cape Arago hike

The South Coast Striders will hike from Sunset Bay to Cape Arago on Saturday, Aug. 22.

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COOS BAY — The South Coast Striders will hike from Sunset Bay to Cape Arago on Saturday, Aug. 22.

The hike has three options and requires pre-registration by visiting this link:

The hike is limited to 15 people, but if demand is high (and there are enough leaders), start times can be staggered. Also, there is a short hike option that goes from Sunset Bay to Shore Acres and back.

To volunteer to lead, send an email to

Hike description: The whole hike goes from Sunset Bay day use area, along the coast through Shore Acres up to the Simpson Reef Overlook. From there the group crosses the road and follows a trail that meets the pack trail. The hike will go up (and down, then up again) the pack trail and eventually turn onto the perimeter trail, which heads back toward Shore Acres.

From Shore Acres hikers will take a shorter route back to Sunset Bay. The total hike is 8.5 miles. The highest elevation is 570 feet, but because of the up and down, there is 1,000 feet of climbing.

Short hike — This will just go to Shore Acres and back. It will be under four miles, all pretty level. A volunteer is needed to lead the short hike, or hikers will need to return on their own. 

Another option is to hike as far as Simpson Reef and then return. This will be almost 8 miles, but it’s all level. Hikers will be on their own for the return.

New hike guidelines

1. Hike groups will be limited to 15 people.

2. Hikers will be asked to complete a registration form so that organizers can control the number.

3. Hikers will be asked to maintain social distance (as much as 10-12 feet) on the trail

4. Hikers will be asked to have face covering (like a bandana) that can be pulled up at tight spots on the trail

5. Hikers should step off the trail to let others pass

The trail from Sunset Bay to Simpson Reef Overlook was pretty crowded during the pre-hike, so these guidelines will be important, organizers said.

Other information

The restrooms at the Sunset Bay day use area are closed, but the restrooms at the beach (just to the north) are open, so stop there on the way in. There are restrooms at Shore Acres (at about the 2.2 and 7 mile points of the hikes).

For those on the long hike, the group will be stopping for lunch at the junction with the perimeter trail. Organizers suggest that hikers might want to snack at the Simpson Reef Overlook, because lunch will be later than usual.

Location and time

Meet 9:30 a.m. at Sunset Bay day use parking lot, near the volleyball courts and restrooms (closed) at south end of Sunset Bay. The short version of the hike will end before noon (unless you spend time in the gardens), and the long version at 2:30 p.m.

Driving directions: From U.S. Highway 101 in downtown Coos Bay follow the signs 12.3 miles through Charleston to Sunset Bay State Park. Park in the day use parking lot.

Remember to complete the registration form.


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