The Oregon Coast is one of the most beautiful regions in the United States, with its pristine beaches, rugged coastline, and stunning scenery. As professional photographers, we know that capturing the beauty of this region is both a challenge and a privilege. In this article, we will explore the natural wonders of the Oregon Coast.
The Oregon Coast has three sections totaling 362 miles. North, Central, and South coasts. From the Columbia River to Cascade Head lies the North Coast. The Central coast goes from Cascade Head to Reedsport, and the South is from Reedsport to the California border. As tourists drive the coastline, they can see a shift in the landscape. The North Coast has very sandy beaches and as you drive south, the sand gives way to cliffs and sea stacks.
Oregon Coast Photography Locations
One of the best things about the Oregon Coast is the variety of landscapes it offers. Whether you're looking for dramatic cliffs or peaceful tide pools, there's a photography location for you. Here are some of the most popular spots for Oregon Coast landscape photography:
Cannon Beach - Known for its iconic Haystack Rock, Cannon Beach is a popular destination for photographers. The rock formations and tide pools make for beautiful photos, especially during sunrise and sunset.
Cape Kiwanda - Located in Pacific City, Cape Kiwanda is a beautiful spot for landscape photography. The towering sand dunes and rock formations create a dramatic backdrop for your photos.
Yaquina Head - Yaquina Head is a beautiful spot for nature and landscape photography. The lighthouse and tide pools are popular subjects, and the rugged coastline offers stunning views.
Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor - The Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor is a 12-mile stretch of coastline that offers some of the most stunning landscapes in Oregon. The towering cliffs, sea stacks, and beaches are perfect for landscape photography..
Tips for Oregon Coast Landscape Photography
To capture the beauty of the Oregon Coast in your photos, there are a few tips you should keep in mind:
Time your visit - The best times for photography along the Oregon Coast are during sunrise and sunset. The light during these times is soft and warm, creating beautiful colors and shadows.
Use a tripod - To ensure your photos are sharp and steady, use a tripod. This will help you avoid camera shake and allow you to capture long exposures.
Play with composition - Don't be afraid to experiment with different compositions. Try using leading lines or the rule of thirds to create visually interesting photos.
Consider the weather - The weather along the Oregon Coast can be unpredictable, so be prepared for changing conditions. Bring a rain cover for your camera and dress in layers to stay warm.
The Oregon Coast is known for its rugged beauty, and the lighthouses that dot the coastline only add to its charm. These historic landmarks have played a vital role in guiding ships safely along the coast for more than a century. In this article, we'll explore the lighthouses of the Oregon Coast and learn about their rich history.
Yaquina Head Lighthouse
The Yaquina Head Lighthouse was first lit in August 1873, and it quickly became an important navigational aid for ships entering Yaquina Bay. The lighthouse was built on a rocky headland overlooking the Pacific Ocean, making it visible from miles away. The lighthouse originally used a first-order Fresnel lens, which produced a bright beam of light that could be seen up to 19 miles away.
Heceta Head Lighthouse
The Heceta Head Lighthouse, located near Florence, is one of the most photographed lighthouses on the Oregon Coast. It was first lit in 1894 and is the brightest lighthouse on the coast, with a beam that can be seen 21 miles out to sea. The lighthouse is open for tours, and visitors can climb to the top for panoramic views of the coastline.
Umpqua River Lighthouse
The Umpqua River Lighthouse, located near Reedsport, was first lit in 1894 and is one of the tallest lighthouses on the Oregon Coast, standing at 65 feet tall. It served as a working lighthouse until 1966 and is now open to the public for tours.
Cape Blanco Lighthouse
Located near Port Orford, the Cape Blanco Lighthouse was first lit in 1870 and is the oldest continually operating lighthouse on the Oregon Coast. The lighthouse is still in use today and is open to the public for tours.
SOUTHERN OREGON COAST
The southern coast of Oregon is where you can find fewer people. This stretch of coastline runs from Reedsport to the California border. If you enjoy long walks on the beach with sea stacks everywhere, Bandon is for you. The famous sea stacks in Bandon are the Howling Dog and Wizard’s Hat. For lighthouses, the north side of the Coquille River lies the Coquille River Lighthouse.
For peace and quiet on the Oregon Coast, Gold Beach is the town for you. Nestled between the Pacific ocean and the Rogue River, Gold Beach offers thousands of acres of protected lands for activities. Hiking, biking, clamming, and fishing are just a few options in this quiet coastal town.
Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor
The corridor was created in the 1950s and includes 12 miles of rugged coastline between Brookings and Gold Beach. It was designated a state scenic corridor in 1961 and has since become a popular destination for hikers, photographers, and nature lovers.
Between Gold Beach and Brookings lies the Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor. Arguably the most amazing stretch of coastline in the lower 48 states for nature and seascape photography. The craggy bluffs, offshore rock formations, and secluded beaches fill the area. A few of the more visited areas in the corridor are Secret Beach, Thunder Rock Cove, Natural Bridge, and Cape Sebastian. Although it’s only 12 miles in length, The Boardman Corridor is a must see. The Boardman Corridor is where you may find the most photographers. The seascapes are amazing and only a short walk from the car.
The Oregon Coast is one of the best places in the lower 48 states for dramatic seascape photography. With all the lighthouses and sea stacks create an amazing area. The southern coast is the least populated with the Boardman Corridor, Gold Beach, and Brookings to name a few. If you ever get the chance, spending a few days on the coast is worth it. The best part is that camping is allowed in most parking areas. Be respectful of the no camping signs as Oregon is nice enough to let us camp in most locations.