The day started pretty perfectly with a descent down Tillamook Head to a beach where several movies were filmed.
We again encountered epic mud, though significantly less elevation gain, so it was easier to get through. I still was alarmed by the environmental damage. Luckily, after a short roadwalk connector, we were back on the beach.
Cannon Beach was hopping, but not as busy as I had feared. Generally the beaches have not been crazy busy.
Our challenge of the day was to time our beach walk with the tides so we could get through several pinch points only accessible with low water.
The most noteworthy is Hug Point, where the trail is on the last remnant of an old coastal road blasted into rock. This spot needs to be crossed within an hour of low tide. We made it, and took a deep breath. The alternative was to backtrack to a highway and get through that way. Ick.
We made great time the whole way on the beach, enjoying the sights and the relief of navigating Hug Point.
We left the beach at Arch Cape to begin the climb to Cape Falcon. We originally missed the sign for an important turn, so Julie hacked down the weeds obscuring the sign. There are rarely signs on this trail but in a few crucial places they exist. (In other crucial places, they don’t.)
At this point in the day, I was hot and tired, running low on water, energy, and sanity. Given a complete lack of legal camping in the area, making it through is really hard.
We definitely didn’t stealth camp at a very established backcountry site in Oswald West State Park. But if we had, our day would have been about 17.5 miles.