Spring Lake, Oregon, USA
Hidden away behind Oregon’s famous Rockaway Beach, Spring Lake shares its serenity with only a chosen few. Oregon’s North Coast Region is well-known as a vacation destination, but few have visited Spring Lake. Hiding in plain sight beside Highway 101, this 13-acre spring-fed lake offers access only to its inhabitants and the lucky campers that attend Twin Rocks Camp, a church-sponsored campground. A few brave anglers try their luck casting from the side of the road, but there is no space for boat launching or swimming. Most visitors miss the lake entirely, their eyes drawn to the magnificent ocean vistas on the opposite side of the road. Travelers can see the picturesque Twin Rocks towering 100 feet above the coastal waters from here. The landmark rocks are often featured in the visitor’s vacation photos – and Spring Lake is nowhere to be found.
A natural water body, Spring Lake occupies a wide spot on Heitmiller Creek. The creek then meanders under the highway and joins the Pacific Ocean only a half-mile away. Located just south of unincorporated Twin Rocks, Spring Lake has been populated by a few private homes. That is about to change: a new development is being completed that will provide lakefront residential and vacation townhouses to several new owners. Although too small for active water sports, the little lake holds a variety of wildlife. As much of the shoreline is naturally wooded and marshy, Oregon’s bountiful wildlife feels free to come to the water to drink. The marsh area is home to several species of water birds. The serenity of the pond is broken only by the laughter of children attending the Twin Rocks Friends Camp on the southern shore. Rainbow trout and largemouth bass are known to inhabit the pond; trout are planted yearly under an agreement between Oregon Fish and Game and the camp. Water access is by towboat, paddle boat, canoe or kayak. Water sports and beach activities are available across the main road on the Pacific coast.
Across the highway from Spring Lake, Twin Rocks State Park provides access to miles of sandy beach on the Pacific. Immediately north of the state park, Rockaway Beach beckons with seven miles of sand and sun. A full-service dock and marina at the Port of Garibaldi offers every necessity for the sailor. Charter deep-sea fishing, whale-watching cruises and special-purpose charters can all be arranged on short notice. Visitors staying near Spring Lake can access nearly any desired amenity within ten miles of home-base, including golf, shopping, wind surfing, and cycling. Rockaway Beach schedules annual festivals that draw many visitors from Portland, 90 miles away. Some of these include the Kite Festival, Arts and Crafts Show and the Pirate Festival. Specialty shops offer locally-made artisan goods and art pieces.
A popular destination is the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad. Located between Rockaway and Garibaldi, the non-profit railway offers train rides along Tillamook Bay on summer weekends. Dinner trains are scheduled several times throughout the season. The Tillamook County Pioneer Museum makes for a great rainy afternoon outing. Visitors can learn the early history of the Northern Coast from before the time of early human habitation through the lumbering era and into modern times. And the flight buff in the family will demand to visit the Tillamook Air Museum, located south of Tillamook. Housed in a WWII blimp hanger, the museum features over 30 war planes. The former Naval Air Station was a blimp base during WWII.
Between Spring Lake and Portland lies the vast expanse of the Tillamook State Forest. The Tillamook Forest Center is located about 20 minutes east of Tillamook. The center can be reached via Tillamook’s public transportation system. Thousands of acres of State Forest lands cover a large portion of Oregon’s Coast Range mountains. Facilities and trails are provided for picnicking, camping, horseback riding, fishing, mountain biking, swimming and off-road vehicles. The Forest Center offers guided nature tours and learning experiences for all ages.
Vacation rentals are numerous around Spring Lake. Occasionally private cottages are available right on the lake. Other types of lodgings are found along Highway 101 and include beach houses and cabins, hotels, motels and bed-and-breakfasts. Real estate is sometimes available near Spring Lake and can usually be found in the small towns along the coast. Although most popular in warm weather, the coastal area maintains a special beauty even during winter and is always worth a visit. Come and discover Spring Lake. Make it your special, secret destination.
Things to do at Spring Lake OR
- Vacation Rentals
- Wind Surfing
- Cabin Rentals
- Horseback Riding
- Wildlife Viewing
- State Park
- State Forest
Fish species found at Spring Lake OR
- Black Bass
- Largemouth Bass
- Rainbow Trout
Spring Lake OR Photo Gallery
Spring Lake OR Statistics & Helpful Links
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