Late Fall at Soapstone Lake

With the weatherman’s promise of a respite from the fall rains, I drove to the Soapstone Lake Trailhead in the Clatsop State Forest in late autumn. It is a relatively easy hike – – – three miles roundtrip with 475 feet of elevation gain.

The area lies on the west side of the Coastal Mountains about 13 miles from Seaside. It’s a fairly new trail in good shape with four footbridges.

There was some fresh sign deer along the trail, mostly near a grassy meadow that was once the site of old homesteader’s cabin.

Upon reaching the far side of the Lake, I found a nice place to take some photos and eat a snack.

On the way back I marveled at the size of the huge stumps along the trail, a reminder of old-time logging in the early 20th century.

Soapstone Lake

Waterfall nearby on the North Fork of the Nehalem River

Footbridge over a small creek

Railroad ties used for stair steps in the trail

Why your humble scribe does not do much bushwhacking in the Coastal Mountains

Soapstone Lake

The left side of the trail slowly eroding away

Veal (plump Roosevelt Elk spotted near the trailhead)


Categories: Oregon Coastal Mountain HikingTags: ,


  1. Great fun and good pics John

  2. Beautiful images, John. Thanks for mentioning a new place for me to explore.

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