|Coleman Creek water diversion system and pipes no longer used|
I recently took a hike with my bushwhacking friend Eleanor to see Coleman Creek and the rest of the landslide area for myself, top to bottom. If you decide to follow this route, please consult guidebooks and online services for details: the numbers I give are just approximates and come from my own guidebooks rather than personal measurements. The total distance is about 4 miles and 250' elevation gain. I can attest to the wonderful scenery.
|Tidal pool near north face of Cape Meares|
|View of Cape Meares and Bayocean from trail|
on north face of Cape Meares
From the parking lot, hike one mile north along the closed section of the Cape Meares Loop Road. You'll notice pipes on the uphill side of the road that divert water from creeks during strong runoff. When you get to the active landslide area you'll see an older side road on the downhill side. This road was abandoned due to earlier slides. It leads to the view of Bayocean and Cape Meares that I currently use for my cover photo. The layered chunks of earth you can see there tell the tale of the landslides without a thousand words. When you see a little fence on the uphill side of the road, take the trail through an open gate just a short way to see the abandoned water diversion system pictured in the first photo above.
As you hike down the two track you'll come upon a circular cement pad where the Cape Meares water tank used to sit. Then you'll see why it was moved: cracks all over the ground; some quite large. Just next to it there's a 10' drop cliff where the road breaks. You'll eventually see where the trail mentioned earlier that's closed due to landslides. On 5th, take the first left onto Pacific, then south on 4th. Left at Bayocean Rd. and you're back at your car. This last section in Cape Meares is about 1/4 mile.
For details on this slide and efforts to gain funding to repair the loop road see pages 10 to 33 of a recent letter to Senator Ron Wyden from a number of Tillamook County Board of County Commissioners and other local government entities.