Pistol River State Scenic Viewpoint

  General Advisory 08/21/17
Aug. 25 Note: South coast beach hikers/bicyclists should stop before entering Chetco Bar Fire area, Cape Sebastian-OR/CALI border. South coast U.S. 101 bicyclists should check road conditions before entering Chectco Bar Fire area. http://www.tripcheck.com Aug. 21 Note: Smoke from the Chetco Bar fire is drifting into day-use areas. Air quality is diminished. NO BEACH FIRES. Due to high fire conditions Coos Forest Protection Association is imposing a Regulated Use Closure. All beaches fronting state parks in Harris Beach MU will be closed to beach fires. Beachfront parks include Crissey Field, Winchuck, McVay, Harris Beach, Lone Ranch, Whaleshead, Pistol River, Myers Creek, and Kissing Rock. Camp fires have also been banned in the campground at Harris Beach State Park. Briquettes, tiki-style torches and candles (Citronella, too) are also prohibited until further notice. Propane stoves and propane fire pits are allowed at this time. Loeb State Park is closed due to proximity to the Chetco Bar fire.

Major Features & Activities

  • Blue Indicates that some, but not all, facilities are accessible according to Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards
Major Features & Activities:
  • Hiking Trails
  • Horse Trails
  • Vault Toilets
  • Viewpoint
  • Windsurfing
  • Beach Access
  • Fishing

Pistol River State Park is set in the dunes of the southern Oregon coast.  The river supposedly got its name when a militia soldier lost his pistol in the river during the infamous Rogue River Indian War.  In March of 1856, a decisive battle was fought here.

The dunes and the river system that feeds them are what make this area unique.  During the spring and summer months, the dunes actually grow.  The river has changed its course numerous times in recent history and pothole ponds attract waterfowl and shorebirds making this is an excellent birding locale.  Ocean windsurfing is so good here it has become the location for several national championships.