2018 Heartland Sundance
2018 Heartland Sundance
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Located in the middle of the Oregon coastline, Umpqua Lighthouse State Park is well worth a visit for anyone that has chosen to book an RV in Douglas County. Handily located at the intersection of Highways 101 and 38, the park is easily accessible from nearby coastal towns such as Newport as well as larger inland cities like Eugene and even Portland.
The park itself is centered around the Umpqua lighthouse that was originally built in the late 19th century. Due to weak foundations, the lighthouse collapsed ten years later and was replaced by the structure that we see standing there today. With the boundless Pacific Ocean to the west and rolling sand dunes to the east, consider renting an RV near Umpqua Lighthouse State Park, for the ultimate coastal break.
With a sandy coastline, rolling green hills and a freshwater lake all within the confines of the Umpqua Lighthouse State Park, renting an RV here to explore the great outdoors is a no brainer.
Second, to the lighthouse itself, Lake Marie is a focal point in the park, with many of the day use areas and campground branching off from there. This is no surprise as there is an abundance of recreational activities based around the lake itself. Fishing is one of the most popular ways to enjoy the lake, especially just after it has been restocked with rainbow trout which happens, on average, around three times a year. Non-motorised boats aren’t allowed on the lake, so it is best to find a spot along the shoreline or bring a canoe!
Hiking around Lake Marie is also a popular past time for anyone camping at Umpqua Lighthouse State Park. Take a leisurely stroll along the one-mile trail that loops around the lake and end it with a refreshing swim in the lake, taking time to relax on the small sandy beach. If you fancy venturing a little further afield into the park, try the John Dellenbeck Trail. This is a tricky 5.4-mile-long trip that starts in the coastal forest and winds through the dunes. Although the difficulty level is only moderate, walking through the sand can make this a tiring hike.
Surrounded by dunes that can tower up to heights of 500 feet, camping with an RV in the park is ideal for any off-road enthusiast. The dunes found here are some of the largest in Oregon and provides the perfect setting for a day of rambling in a dune buggy. Head to Reedsport to rent your own buggy or go on a guided tour, which will guarantee the best spots in the dune for some adventuring!
RV camping at Umpqua Lighthouse State Park is possible thanks to the small campground situated inside the park. With just twelve fully serviced sites that cater to RV users, competition for them can be fierce, so reserve ahead if possible. Alternatively set up camp at one of the more primitive sites and use the modern onsite washrooms. Well-behaved pets are more than welcome on the campground, although they should be kept within your own site, and be seen at all times.
If this campsite is full, consider staying a little further out at Salmon Harbor RV Park, an easy five-minute drive away. This is a much larger campsite with all sites providing full hookups for your rental RV. With a laundry room on site, a fish cleaning station, and a recreation room consider staying here if you prefer a campground with some added extras!
Umpqua Lighthouse State Park is located in an area rich with local flora, fauna, and history. In fact, there are heaps of attractions to see outside of the park. One of the most popular attractions in the area is the Dean Creek Elk Viewing Area. Here it is possible to see a gang of elk up to 100 strong grazing in the meadows. For the best chances of seeing these sizeable animals, drive up to the main viewing area along Highway 38, keep an eye out for them on the way.
Back in the town of Reedsport, make sure to stop in at the Umpqua Discovery Center, aptly located right on the riverfront. This interesting and informative museum houses a series of exhibits that tell of early life in the Umpqua Dunes. Through the interactive displays, learn about the people that lived here and animals that used to roam free, and how these have changed over the years. One of the best features in the museum is the large theater that shows a range of documentary films all based on local history.
If you are in need of a bit of rest and relaxation, why not head down the road to Elkton, where some of the area’s best wine is produced. Usually, such a southern location would not allow for such grapes to be produced. However, thanks to the regions location, the coastal breeze moderates the climate. As a result, this unique region is able to produce distinctive Pinot Noir and Alsace wines. The Brandborg Vineyard and Winery was the original pioneer of winemaking in the area and is well worth a visit. Since this time, a few other wineries have also opened nearby, so why not take a self-guided tour around them all!