Smith River's sights to see

Samuel Boardman Corridor State Park

This corridor is a 12 mile, forested, linear park with a rugged, steep coastline interrupted by small sand beaches.This park was named in honor of Samuel H. Boardman, the first Oregon Parks superintendent.He and others of his generation felt this shining coastline should be saved for the public.What gems they gave us: admire the 300-year old Sitka spruce trees, gaze at the amazing Arch Rock and Natural Bridges, and walk the 27 miles of Oregon Coast Trail that weave through the giant forests.

Seaside prairies, spectacular vistas, secluded cove beaches, rugged cliffs and forested sea stacks come one after the other throughout this park.Stand and ponder the old shell middens and wonder what it was like to live in a Native American village by the Pacific Ocean.

Harris Beach State Park

Harris Beach was named after the Scottish pioneer George Harris who settled here in the late 1880s to raise sheep and cattle.The park boasts the largest island off the Oregon coast.Bird Island (also called Goat Island) is a National Wildlife Sanctuary and breeding site for such rare birds as the tufted puffin.The park offers sandy beaches interspersed with rocky outcroppings harboring interesting tide-pools with their wide variety of life.Sea stacks dot the ocean just off shore.

The park’s beauty changes with the seasons.Many people are drawn to the powerful and dramatic winter storms; others seek the green and fragrant spring.Summer is the time to bring your kites, shovels and pails with dry days of sun and occasional fog.Fall is often the best time of year with clearer, warm days and gorgeous sunsets.Wildlife viewing opportunities are abundant, with gray whales on their winter and spring migrations, Harbor seals, California sea lions, sea birds and the rich marine gardens.All-in-all making this park a fascinating stop for camping or beach-combing.

Stout Grove

Stout Grove is the world’s most scenic stand of redwoods.

Located on a small floodplain at the confluence of two rivers, Stout Grove is a quintessential alluvial-flat grove, with an otherworldly, cathedral-like majesty. There are quite a few good-sized trees here, although the Stout Tree with its distinctively rippled bark dwarfs all the others.


The trees are all redwoods, with no under-story of tan-oak or other small trees to obscure the views. The redwoods are densely packed, especially at the west end of the grove. A perfect, plush, lawn-like layer of ferns and redwood sorrel carpets the ground.

The grove has a remarkably hushed and serene environment. Sounds are damped out by the thick, spongy layer of needles on the ground. What’s more, the grove is hidden away off the normal tourist routes and busy Highway 101 is miles away.