Category: General Article
GPS Coordinates: 44.496191, -124.08477
Seal Rock is a state park located approximately 10 miles (16 km) south of Newport. A series of spectacular rock formations offshore — including a crest-like formation known as “Elephant Rock” — make the area a perfect stop for photographers. These geological formations were part of a massive lava flow which covered much of the state starting about 15 million years ago. Persistent erosion by rain, wind and wave action have subsequently carved the volcanic basalt into unusual shapes referred to as “sea stacks.”
As the park’s name implies, this is a haul-out area for marine mammals such as Harbor Seals and California Sea Lions. Extensive tide pools are located along the beach to the south of the main parking lot and seabirds like Brown Pelicans, Pelagic Cormorants, Common Murres and Black Oystercatchers can be spotted on the rocks nearby. There are restrooms and short hiking paths at the top of the cliffs overlooking the beach.