Whether you take Highway 6 or drive to Tillamook from another coastal town, simply head north up Highway 101. You will drive along the edge of Tillamook Bay, through modest Bay City and salty Garibaldi to Barview. If you should find yourself in Rockaway, turn around. You blinked and missed it!
Tillamook Bay Lifesaving Station was built here; in fact it still remains, abandoned and derelict, facing an uncertain future. Meanwhile, Barview became a popular jumping-off point for visitors headed to the growing city of Bayocean. A jetty was built on the north side of the bay, but the south side waited many years for its jetty. In the meantime, Bayocean Spit was breached and the town was lost to the sea. Barview, however, stood strong on its sturdy bank. These days, Highway 101 runs alongside the bay with a strip of railroad tracks in between. Homes perch on the narrow sliver of ground betwixt the tracks and the bay.
Look for a humble street heading seaward over the train tracks to Barview Jetty Park. This county park seems to have been built in fits and starts, but they have included almost everything. Park your RV in a wide-open lot? No problem. Tuck your tent into a cozy, treed hideaway? Got it. Rent a cabin? Got that, too. Camp near the jetty itself, exposed to the wind and spray? Certainly. The scent of the ocean breeze mingles with the aroma of campfire smoke as evening creeps in.
|Day-use area #1
|Day-use area #2
Look on the north side of the parking lot for a short trail to a half-mile-long ocean beach. You will also find a little bald hill with viewing benches at the top. Its graveled path is long and smooth, so it could potentially be accessible for wheelchairs. This hillock looks out over low, rolling dunes as well as the beach. Bring binoculars to watch for wildlife.
Nehalem Bay State Park north of Rockaway or Cape Lookout to the south. Either way, you will discover the north coast's "Roads Less Traveled."
|The sleepy town of Barview in the distance