South Yaquina Head Rocky Shore

Next Rocky Shore North  

About the South Yaquina Head Rocky Shore Area

Yaquina Head is located approximately five miles north of Newport, in Lincoln City, Oregon. The rocky shoreline is made up of a wide range of habitat types; rocky intertidal intermixed with sand and cobble/pebble beaches, basalt and sandstone cliffs, with associated submerged and submersible rocks and subtidal habitat, including kelp beds.
Marine GardenThe entire Yaquina Head area is part of the Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area (YHONA), which is managed by the Bureau of Land Management for its outstanding natural resources, scenic values and public enjoyment. An approximately 1.8 mile section of this coastline is one of Oregon’s seven marine gardens. The Yaquina Head marine garden encompasses “ all rocky areas, tide pools, and sand beaches situated between extreme high tide and extreme low tide lying between the sand beach on the north, and the sand beach on the south of Yaquina Head. Includes rocky areas abutting the sand beaches on the north and south sides of the headland.”
Key Resources
High use intertidal habitat, seabird colony sites including: common murres, pelagic and Brandt’s cormorant, pigeon guillemots, western gulls, tufted puffins, rhinoceros auklets, and black oystercatchers. Endangered brown pelicans and threatened peregrine falcons and bald eagles also use the area, as do harbor seals for pupping and haulout. Yaquina Head is one of Oregon’s largest seabird nesting areas and has been designated as a Globally Important Bird Area by the American Bird Conservancy.
  What can you do here?
This site is especially popular for tidepooling, whalewatching, and birdwatching enthusiasts including large numbers of schoolgroups on fieldtrips. The status of the northern end as a marine garden means that collection of intertidal shellfish and marine invertebrates is prohibited. BLM staff is on-site during most of the year’s low tides to monitor intertidal visitor use.

Educational Opportunities
BLM offers various types of interpretive services including on-site tidepool rangers and a staffed visitors center/interpretive building. In the summer there are usually between 3-4 rangers down in the tidepools, available to answer questions, provide interpretive services and provide an on-site presence to protect and enforce the rules and area closures.

Getting to the Rocky shore at South Yaquina Head

There are several paved access trails down to the rocky shore, including one (near the lighthouse parking area) which in combination with a steep staircase, leads down into the marine garden and another on the south end of YHONA which leads down to a handicap accessible tidepool area (Quarry Cove). Visual access to the many offshore rocks is outstanding from this entire section, but to get up the closest (those just offshore of the tip of the Head), visit the overlook closest to the lighthouse. Please note that there is a $5/vehicle entry fee, which is good for 3 days and includes access to the visitor’s center.

Public Access Option 1 for South Yaquina Head Rocky Shore
Public Access Option 2 for South Yaquina Head Rocky Shore
Public Access Option 3 for South Yaquina Head Rocky Shore

Who Owns this Site?
Submerged and submersible (intertidal) lands: Division of State Lands; offshore rocks above Mean High Water: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; upland above MHW: Bureau of Land Management; dry sands beach areas: Oregon Parks and Recreation Department.
  Who Manages this Site?
Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) manages the intertidal area as a marine garden, BLM manages the upland as an Outstanding Natural Area, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service manages offshore rocks above MHW as part of the Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge. BLM enforces several types of restrictions including: no dogs past the parking lots, restrictions on cliff access to protect bird and mammal reproduction, and seasonal closures of sensitive intertidal and animal haulout and nesting areas. There is a reservation system for schoolgroups, who need to contact BLM prior to visiting and will be allotted a two hour time slot. BLM tries to keep less than 100 people at a time down in the tidepools.

Data for the South Yaquina Head Rocky Shore
[1 Records Listed]

South Yaquina Head Rocky Shore GIS Data
Data Layer

[1 Records Listed]

Information compiled by Laurel Hillmann, NOAA Coastal Management Fellow, OPRD

Network News

Feed not found.

Recent Data

Our most recent data added relates to all the interesting Ocean planning going on in Oregon. You can view an RSS feed of that data here.

Contact Us

We'd love to hear from you!

You can send feedback or ideas to the Coastal Atlas team at:

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.