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Recommended by the Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral industries

Shore Acres State Park near Cape Arago in Coos County

A marine terrace borders the Coos County shore for much of the distance between the entrance to Coos Bay and the Curry County line. Rocks on which the terrace was formed differ along the shore, and erosion along this terrace has produced a shore with varied and magnificent scenery.

Different degrees of resistance to erosion have allowed the waves to sculpture the terrace into sharp points of land, reefs, islands, secluded coves, and a myriad of smaller forms. Here, near Cape Arago, the terrace is on a sequence of Tertiary sedimentary rocks that are inclined steeply toward the east and cut by numerous fractures.

Erosion has shaped a shore that is distinctly different from that of any other part of the Oregon coast. The predominant rock unit, the Coaledo Formation, contains an abundance of marine fossils.

The park is also home to a famous formal garden and has, on the site of the former owner’s mansion, an observation building that is popular for spectacular views and whale watching.

Access: On the Cape Arago Highway, 13 miles southwest of Coos Bay/North Bend and U.S. Highway 101.

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Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries
800 NE Oregon Street, Suite 965, Portland, OR 97232-2162
971-673-1555, FAX 971-673-1562
email us at DOGAMI