All About the Siuslaw National Forest

Siuslaw National Forest Website

The Siuslaw National Forest lies within the Oregon Coast range, a mountain range running from the Columbia River to north central California. The forest is bordered by the Willamette Valley on the east and the Pacific Ocean on the west. It is one of two National Forests in the contiguous U.S. with oceanfront property. Marys Peak, the highest in the Coast Range at 4,097 feet, is prominent west of the Siuslaw’s headquarters in Corvallis.

Four major rivers flow through the Siuslaw: the Nestucca, Alsea, Siuslaw, and Umpqua. The Forest provides important habitat for anadromous fish, including the threatened coastal Coho Salmon, as well as many terrestrial species, including the threatened Northern Spotted Owl, Marbled Murrelet, and Western Snowy Plover. 

A popular recreation Forest, the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area and Sand Lake Recreation Area provide proving grounds for Off-Highway Vehicle enthusiasts who enjoy the challenges of riding on sand. Cape Perpetua and Cascade Head are favorite spots along the coast for hikers and nature lovers to experience the unique forest-sea ecosystem. Known as a restoration forest, the Siuslaw has won awards both for its watershed restoration efforts as well as its contributions to the local economy. The Forest enjoys broad support locally and has some of the strongest partnerships in the Pacific Northwest Region.

The Cape Perpetua Scenic Area sits two miles south of the town of Yachats on a headland of the majestic Oregon Coast. Becoming part of the Siuslaw in 1908, Cape Perpetua rises more than 800 feet above sea level and offers an unobstructed view of nearly 70 miles of pristine cliffs, beaches, and coastline.

In 1933, the Civilian Conservation Corps built Cape Perpetua campground, a network of trails, and the West Shelter Observation Point. During World War II, the U.S. military used West Shelter as a coastal watch station and a large coastal defense gun was temporarily installed. Congress established the Scenic Area in the 1960s. Today, the Area contains 2,700 acres of spruce, Douglas fir, western hemlock, and remarkable coastal opportunities.

Author Frank Herbert was inspired to write the sci-fi novel “Dune” by a visit to the Oregon Dunes. The Dunes stretch along 40 miles of the coast between the towns of Florence and North Bend. They are the largest expanse of coastal dunes in North America and provide stellar OHV opportunities.

630,000 acres
22,000 acres of wilderness
349,141 acres for timber production
3,200 miles of streams
$1.8 million in recreation fees
1 national recreation area
  • Your Fees At Work

    A placeholder image

    See what was accomplished this last year on the Siuslaw National Forest thanks to recreation fees.