Battle Rock Beach

• Battle Rock Wayside Park is a historic site with scenic views and sandy beaches
• This is a fantastic location for surfing, tide pool exploring, agate hunting, whale watching, and beachcombing

Historical Landmarks OregonHiking OregonFishingAgate HuntingTidepool exploringSurfing

Battle Rock Wayside Park in Port Orford is a scenic outdoor destination with a very interesting history and a plethora of things to do. This is a fantastic location for kite and windsurfing, rock hounding, nature viewing or simply enjoying a relaxing stroll on the sandy beach. The park allows easy access to Dock Beach and Battle Rock Beach that separated from each other by a massive headland called Battle Rock.

As soon as you pull into the parking lot, you will see a viewpoint providing an impressive view at Battle Rock, surrounding sea stacks, beach, and the mighty Pacific. Battle Rock Beach is interconnected with Port Orford Heads State Park, so you can hike and enjoy the viewpoints there as well.

Winter storms create a perfect break for surfers and windy days allow wind and kite surfers to enjoy their favorite pastime. Beachcombing and agate hunting are great here as well, especially after the winter storms during low tide. Agates in a variety of colors are the most common finds.

Located west of the Battle Rock, Port of Port Orford is a unique port, the only "dolly dock" on the Pacific West Coast. Boats are launched and retrieved using the large hoists, and housed on rubber-tired dollies or trailers.

Fishing is popular activities here. You can fish off the beach, dock or jetty for smelt, sardine, herring, and bottom fish. Kayakers and canoers can launch at the dock or beach on quite days and fish in calm waters of Tichenor and Nellie's Coves.

On the north of the dock, there are an interdial area with many colorful marine creatures including sea stars, anemones, sea urchins, and others in tide pools.

Every 4th of July the volunteer fire department organizes a fireworks event right at the beach. It is one of the best displays you can attend on the entire Oregon coast and the terrain of the park serves as a natural amphitheater for the guests.

The beach is just a short walk away from the parking lot. There is plenty of space on the lot and there are also restrooms and picnic tables. Stop by the visitor's center to learn more about the park and the surrounding area.

Short History

The Battle Rock name comes from the 1851 skirmish between Native Americans of the Quatoma Band and European settlers. On June 9, 1851, Captain William Tichenor left 9 of his men in the area of Port Orford and promised to return in 2 weeks after resupplying his ship in San Francisco.

Quatoma Band natives were not happy with the presence of outsiders and Tichenor men retreated from the beach to the sea stack which became the Battle Rock and established a defensive perimeter.

Natives waited for the reinforcement and attacked. Lucky for Europeans, they brought a small cannon and managed to repel the attack injuring and killing multiple Quatoma Band warriors while having two men injured from arrows.

Tichenor haven't returned in two weeks as promised, so his men decided to escape under the cover of the night. They made their way to Coos Bay under the protection of friendly native Americans in the area.

Tichenor later returned in July with 70 men who build the fort which later became Port Orford.

The source of the conflict was the US Congress Oregon Donation Land Act of 1850. This law allowed settlers to claim native land without their consideration or input.

Battle Rock Beach
Sea stack
Battle Rock Beach
Battle Rock Beach
Boat on a hill
Battle Rock Beach
Beach view

Battle Rock Wayside Park | General Description

Open: Year-round for day-use
Managed by: Oregon State Parks

Amenities: Restrooms and picnic tables
Activities: Beachcombing, rockhounding, & nature viewing

Day-use fees: None
Usage: Moderate to high
Accommodations: Lodging in Port Orford
Battle Rock Wayside Park is located:

  • 27 miles south of Bandon
  • 160 miles southwest of Eugene.

Adventures Nearby

Directions to Battle Rock Wayside Park

From Port Orford,

  • Take Highway 101 south to Jefferson St
  • Turn right onto to Jefferson St and then left onto the driveway
  • Follow the driveway to the parking.

Get Google Maps Directions

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