Wander Walking Trails
Astoria has many walking paths that offer interesting views of the city and its surroundings. Just a short drive from downtown is a forest trail that will take you from 28th and Irving past the Cathedral Tree (a huge spruce located in Astoria’s urban forest) to the top of Coxcomb Hill and the stunning views from the Astoria Column.
In Warrenton, stroll past shaded woods, the Skipanon Marina, the D.K. Warren House and spectacular views of the Columbia River and abundant wildlife on one or all three trails in the Warrenton Trails System. (www.warrentontrails.org)
Follow the footsteps of the Lewis and Clark expedition to the Pacific Ocean on the 6.5-mile Fort to Sea Trail. Enjoy a variety of terrain ranging from coastal forests to wetlands, with varying levels of difficulty and the option to hike small parts of the trail. (www.nps.gov/lewi/planyourvisit/forttosea.htm)
Astoria is often compared to San Francisco because of its waterfront hillsides dotted with Victorian homes, making it an excellent city to tour on foot for both water views and interesting sites. One-fourth of the city’s homes are eligible for Historic Landmark status, and many of the houses are restored to their original beauty. The best way to see the intriguing architecture and great views of the river and ocean is with a walking tour. Booklets are available at the Astoria-Warrenton Area Chamber of Commerce, the Heritage Museum, the Flavel House and the Columbia River Maritime Museum for $4.00.
Carruthers Park and Warrenton Dog Park
The City of Warrenton’s Eben H. Carruthers Memorial Park is situated on NW Warrenton Dr. This community park is home to a covered picnic area, a swing set, an historical Lewis & Clark information viewpoint, the starting point of the 4.5-mile Warrenton Waterfront Trail and a modern dog park. Nestled at the trailhead, the 2/3-acre dog park is noted as the first fully fenced off-leash dog park on the Oregon Coast. Main features include double-gated entries, separate small and large dog sections, pet water and waste stations, benches, night lighting and plenty of open space.
Play at Tapiola
The Tapiola Park Playground is a great place for kids of all ages to let loose and enjoy the miniature sites and attractions of Astoria. Favorite local destinations, including Fort Clatsop, the Astoria Column, the Flavel House and the Astoria-Megler Bridge, are featured as small replicas for interactive play. Built and paid for entirely through the efforts of the local community, the park is located at 900 West Marine Dr.
Paddle and Surf Local Waterways
Visitors can find a range of water sport activities in the region. Sea kayaking is quite challenging on the North Oregon Coast, but it’s worth the effort. Touring by paddle on the Lower Columbia River through the islands of the Lewis & Clark National Wildlife Refuge reveals wildlife such as bald eagles, deer and water fowl. For wind surfers, Youngs Bay between Astoria and Warrenton can be a great spot for both beginners and experts because of the abundance of shallow waters and strong wind conditions. There are also several locations for kite surfing, or visit the nearby Cullaby and Coffenbury lakes for a tranquil canoe trip and wildlife viewing. If you’d like to take in the view from the water, but prefer to let an engine do the work, Columbia River Eco Tours regularly offers guided trips around the harbor and estuary.
Clam, Crab and Fish
With its proximity to the ocean and riverfront locale, Astoria and Warrenton have a bounty of seafood available. Visitors can go to a seafood market or, better yet, catch it themselves. Licenses and equipment are easily obtained, and charter services can take you to the best fishing spots. For more information on services, seasons, locations and regulations, contact the Astoria-Warrenton Area Chamber of Commerce or the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife at www.dfw.state.or.us. Sportsfishers can look for an opportunity to catch Chinook (King) and Coho (Silver) Salmon, Sturgeon, Albacore Tuna, Halibut, Razor Clams and Dungeness Crab.