Map of Samuel H Boardman State Scenic Corridor
Major locations are listed below, from north to south.
The rock is the easiest-viewed natural arch in the scenic corridor, and the best perspective of it is at the end of a short trail starting from a popular parking/picnic area, surrounded by floral meadows. Two spur paths lead to other nearby overlooks. The arch itself is a squat, flat-topped formation 500 feet out to sea, next to another small island.
This sheltered strip of sand between vertical rocks is accessed by a steep and relatively little used trail through thick woodland.
Thunder Rock Cove:
Another path (1/3 mile) drops down steadily but not too steeply through the spruce forest, out to a rim of a grassy, partly wooded promontory for beautiful ocean views; there are many rocks out to sea, a nice sandy beach below, and an arch to the south, beneath huge, shadowy cliffs.
From a large parking area, a section of the Coast Trail runs south giving fleeting glimpses of several natural bridges quite far below, but partly obscured by the foliage. Lesser trails branch off descending more steeply to closer viewpoints.
US 101 crosses Thomas Creek via the highest bridge in Oregon (345 feet). From here a half mile trail runs northwards down to the south end of China Beach; the north end may be reached via a similar length hike from the Natural Bridges parking area.
A side road climbs a little way to a large parking lot, the far side of which has some long distance views northwards. A path (the Coast Trail) runs south, dropping 200 feet extremely steeply, to a junction with a side path to the Indian Sands, a treeless sandstone plateau with dunes and some minor but colorful erosive formations. Although close to water level there is no easy access as the sands are guarded by lesser cliffs still 100 feet or so high. All around are the usual sheer or steeply-sloping cliffs, deep blue-green, kelp-filled water, plus a sizeable arch to the south.
A short gravel road slopes down to a parking area at the north end of Whaleshead Beach; the turn off is right opposite a popular resort/campground. The beach is bordered by a high headland to the north, the end of the cliff-bound section of the scenic corridor, but grey sands extend over a mile south, dotted with a few rocks and crossed by three streams. Three larger stacks lie just out to sea, one, the highest, bearing an official name (Whaleshead Island).
House Rock Viewpoint:
South of Whaleshead Beach the land becomes less densely wooded, allowing views of distant House Rock, nearly a mile out in the ocean. The overlook is at the end of a spur road, intersecting the Coast Trail.
The next promontory, Cape Ferrelo, is largely devoid of trees, and is crossed by a half mile trail to a viewpoint on the southwestern tip, a favoured location for whale watching in spring.
Lone Ranch Beach:
The south side of Cape Ferrelo slopes down to Lone Ranch Beach, which has a typical mix of sand, tidepools and offshore rocks. A spur road and a short path give access.