Another Hidden Gem
Floras Lake is a state recreation area tucked off Highway 101, 10 miles north of Port Orford, just south of Langlois. This sandy-bottomed, fresh water lake is separated from the Pacific Ocean by forest, meadows, and lagoons.
We park next to a sailboat and boat ramp.
In the above picture, Floras Creek is in the fore ground and the lake is behind the wetland grasses.
This is a popular spot for windsurfers and kiteboarders because the steady northwest winds average 15-25 knots from June through October.
The lake empties into Floras Creek.
A small bridge passing over the creek allows foot traffic to reach the shore of the lake.
On the map below, the orange lines below Floras Lake show the creeks that empty into the lake and the orange line above represents Floras Creek.
These tributaries combine into the New River which flows north behind a dune ridge before veering west to enter the ocean.
After crossing the bridge, a narrow, sandy path invites us to the lake.
But before heading to the lake, we take a short 1/2 mile detour and walk through an open meadow leading to the ocean.
We arrive at the edge of the sand dune ridge and climb up, laughing like little kids as we plod through the deep sand…
…and get ready for…
…the view that never disappoints!
We turn around and retrace our steps to check out the lake, windsurfers, and catch the Floras Lake Trail.
Pumping up the sail…
Getting ready to sail…
As we walk around the west side of the lake, (Did I say walk? I meant to say plow through deep gravelly sand…) we see the trail markers heading south which we trust will lead to Blacklock Point.
On June 21st, Jeff and I hiked to Blacklock Point from Airport Road. Along the way we encountered 2 junctions on the trail leading to Floras Lake.
As we follow the trail signs, I start to feel the irritation of the tiny sand pebbles accumulating in my hiking boots.
Then the break in the sand dunes catches our attention and my camera and makes me forget about the sand in my shoes and how difficult it is to walk through the deep, sandy silt.
Looking back toward the lake, offers its own spectacular view.
By now, our legs are getting so tired of trodding through deep sand! The trail takes us up onto a sandstone mound of driftwood sculptures. Relief!
We continue on our merry way…
Before long, the deep sand turns into sandstone and packed-down pine needles.
We reach a dark stretch of forest, with ghostly tree limbs lining each side of the trail.
We feel like Hansel and Gretel on their way to discovering a gingerbread house.
Notice the large shroom below. Jeff placed his cell phone in the pic for a size comparison.
We call this portion Medusa Roots.
And this stretch is entitled, The Eve of Destruction.
We never do find the markers for the junction of the Floras Lake and Blacklock Point Trails… We end up at the end of the airport runway. Frustrated, we head back and call it a day.
But we had fun, and the scenery was magnificent. We didn’t encounter a gingerbread house, but we didn’t get eaten by a witch either.