St. Joe & Clearwater Rivers Overland Route & Camping

This route started near Olympia, WA. From there we took highway 101 up and around the Olympic peninsula and then on down the coast. Very little time was spent inside Olympic National Park due to the fact we were driving a 26 foot motorhome. One of our first stop was at Lake Crescent which has a really nice lodge at one end of the lake. We camped at South Beach Campground which overlooks the Pacific Ocean and a rocky beach. This campground was expectedly crowded and has an odd system of reserving the sites (no reservations). We had to wait until the second night there to get a “front row” spot. 

Other highlights included a hike through the Quinault Rainforest and a night at Cape Disappointment State Park. This place had one of the largest campgrounds I had ever seen and it was actually pretty nice. I should have taken more photos of the sites and the setup. Cape disappointment has a nice, large beach and a cool lighthouse that can be hiked to or accessed by vehicle.

Quinault Rainforest

Quinault Rainforest Spider web.

Lake Crescent in Olympic National Park

South Beach Campsite - Olympic National Park

Campsite at Josephus Lake

Josephus Lake view from campsite.

The entire Oregon coast is pretty spectacular. It features great scenery and a ton of parks and little towns to enjoy. On our way south the first stop was the Tillamook Cheese Factory where they have great ice cream(and cheese)! We spent our first night just south of Cape Lookout State Park (campground full) at an OHV area near Sand Beach. Was able to witness a spectacular sunset here. See more photos of that in the full gallery. On the way down the coast we stopped at Cape Foulweather which is an interesting historical point and has a nice little gift shop. You can also whale watch from here with the provided binoculars.  The next night we stayed at the Umpqua Lighthouse State Park Campground. This is situated off the coast along the Oregon Dunes Recreation Area. It was a nice campground next to a pond but the beach wasn’t easily accessible. 

The next morning we made a stop at Cape Blanco State Park which is about a 10 minute drive off highway 101. It was windy up there but offered some great views. 

An even better stop was Port Orford Heads State Park which had some nice walking/hiking trails and a lot of historical information on signs along the trail. The Coast Guard had a rescue boat launch here that would head out into the roughest seas imaginable to try and save sinking ships. 

At the south end of the state had hoped to camp at Harris Beach State Park but again the campground was full! Plan B was to head inland a bit to Alfred A. Loeb State Park. This was a nice campground along the Chetco River. 

From there we headed into California the next morning to visit Redwoods National Park and start heading back to Boise.

Oregon Route 1

Oregon Route 2

Beach Sunset near Cape Lookout State Park

Beach Sunset near Cape Lookout State Park

Cape Blanco - Oregon

Cape Foulweather - Oregon

Tillamook Cheese Factory

Port Orford Heads - Oregon

Chetco River - Alfred A. Loeb State Park - Oregon

Soldier Lakes Trail