Local Area Attractions
Crabbing in Coos County
You may crab at the Empire boat dock, the Charleston docks, or from a boat. Bays, estuaries, beaches, tide pools, and jetties are opened all year. The Ocean is closed for Dungeness crab from August 15 to November 30. WhenThe best time of the day for crabbing is one hour before and after high tide. The best time of the year to crab is May through October. In the fall and winter they are molting and are soft shelled. HowYou may have three rings, pots, or baited lines per person. Other methods that can be used are by hand, dip net, or a rake. No more that 24 (2 daily catches) can be kept in a trap or live box. To keep the crabs fresh, keep them in ice. Do not mutilate crabs so that sex, size or species cannot be determined before leaving the crab taking site. EquipmentThe equipment you will need to crab are: crab rings or pots, baited lines, a measuring gauge, gloves, a container for holding crabs, and bait. The equipment may be rented or bought from a variety of stores. Bat can be bought or you can use your own, keeping in mind that crabs are attracted by odor and almost any type of meat can be used for bait. Fresh fish carcasses (do not use cabezon, their natural enemy), chicken and turkey backs, or animal parts, and cat food can be used. Laws and LimitsA Crab Fishing licenses is required and can be obtained at most fishing supply stores for a nominal fee. The 1997 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations state that the limits are 12 male Dungeness crabs, minimum size 5 & 3/4 inches measured in a straight line across the back immediately in front of, but not including the points on it's side. Red Rock crab may be 24 of any size or sex. Release other unharmed. Undersized, female Dungeness crabs must be released immediately. If you catch or see a green crab, please notify the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife as they are tracking this species. Soft ShellsAn estimated %50 of crabs caught have a soft shell. To test for soft shells, pinch on of the large walking legs and if the shell gives easily the meat is likely to be mushy. Even if the shell give a little, the crab will no be very tasty because they are holding water and there is little meat. These should be returned to the water. Crab are Arthropods; creatures whose skeletal support is on the outside of the body. Crabs outgrow and shed this exoskeleton frequently.
Beach -- 15 minutes away
UNDEVELOPED BEACHESCome on in, the water’s warm (well, not always). But that is part of the charm. Oregon’s Adventure Coast is the most versatile coastal destination on the Oregon Coast! We have swimming beaches in our many rivers and lakes. And our Ocean coast offers so many different options that you can pick your experience.Whether you want to sit, reflect and just watch the tide, or have a romantic evening watching the sun set over the horizon, you can do it here. Beach combing, whale watching, surfing and clamming are other popular pastimes. With our bay and Coastal landscapes, you could spend your whole vacation doing something different every day and still have plenty to do next time you visit.
Shore Acre State Park
The jewel of the South Coast, Shore Acres State Park is perched on rugged sandstone cliffs high above the ocean. Shore Acres is an unexpected combination of beautiful natural and man-made features. Check out their website to see what is blooming and don't miss their light show from Thanksgiving to New Years. It is a must see when you are visiting our campground.
South Slough Estuary
The South Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve is a 5,000 acre natural area located in the Coos estuary on the south coast of Oregon. The South Slough contains upland forests, freshwater wetlands and ponds, salt marshes, mud flats, eelgrass meadows and open water habitats. Their visitor center is a great stop when you are checking out Charleston. They also have a series of short hikes that highlight the area.
Spinreel Dune Buggy and ATV Rentals
Get the full experience of the beautiful Oregon Dunes and build memories that last a lifetime! Your adventure begins at Spinreel Dune Buggy and ATV Rental where you can rent Quads(ATV’s) ,2-Seat, or 4-Seat Vehicles and drive them yourself. Or take a Tour and have one of their experienced guides drive you. Spinreel is very family oriented and encourage family members from infants to grandparents to come and experience everything the beautiful Oregon Sand Dunes have to offer. The thrill is an experience the whole family will remember for years to come. At Spinreel, we have something for everyone!
Spinreel is a short 15 minutes car ride from Oregon Dunes KOA.
Clamming Coos Bay Oregon
Coos Bay Shellfish Areas* Information provided is a result of past ODFW surveys, recent spot checks, and input from local residents. The purpose of this map is to provide the user with information and locations of recreational shellfish areas where the most likelihood of success may be found by species. Clam species identified within a particular area represent the most abundant found; other species may be present or may exist in areas not identified on the map. This is to be used as a reference as sandbars, clam beds, and species composition can shift over time. Always use caution when boating/crabbing in the lower bay as swift currents during tidal exchanges can occur, and result in loss of gear or cause boat to be pulled out to sea if mechanical problems arise.1. Area 1 (South Slough) can be reached from several access points along the West side of South Slough within Charleston. This area is a large sand/ mud flat that are firm enough to walk easily in most places. Many clam species can be found in this highly marine influenced area. In sandy areas, such as those just South of the Charleston bridge cockle raking is popular. In muddier areas, such as the “Charleston Triangle” (between the commercial docks and the bridge) gaper clams can be found readily at good tides. In areas further up South Slough softshell clams can be found sparingly. Other clams such as Littlenecks and Butter clams are found mixed throughout. A shovel would be best to use in this area.2. Area 2 (North Spit) requires a boat or 4X4 for access. This area supports several large and productive clam beds. All species common to lower bays can be found here, including Gapers, Butters, Cockles, and Littlenecks. A shovel or clam gun would be best to use in this area.3. Area 3 (Fossil Point and Pigeon Point) can be accessed by many points along Cape Arago Highway from Empire to Charleston. Substrate in the area varies from sand/mud to sandstone/ gravel. In the sandier of Pigeon Point Gapers and Cockles are easily found. In gravely areas such as Fossil Point Butter and Littleneck clams are more common. A shovel would be best to use in this area.4. Area 4 (Haynes Inlet, North Slough, and Glasgow) can be reached by the nearby banks from Highway 101 or East Bay Drive. Softshell clams are common throughout the intertidal areas. Ghost shrimp are common in the area so be wary of soft mud. Commercial oyster operations are also nearby so remember that oysters are private property and cannot be harvested recreationally. A shovel or clam gun would be best in this area.5. Area 5 will require a boat for crabbing. Large sandy flats of 20-30’ depth provide excellent bay crabbing year round. Pots may be set anywhere within this area using caution to avoid direct placement in navigation channels.6. Area 6 notes areas for dock crabbing. In Charleston, the primary areas for dock crabbing are the commercial docks, public crab dock, and “T” docks just south of the bridge. Another popular spot is on the docks adjacent to the Empire boat ramp. Dock crabbing is often fruitful year round but less so than boat crabbing.* The boat launches in Coos Bay can be found at the following locations:• Charleston Boat Ramp- within the Charleston marina complex (fee applies)• Empire Boat ramp- located at turn from Ocean Blvd to Cape Arago Hwy (free)• BLM boat ramp- located on North spit, but not always open due to sedimentation (free)• California Street Boat ramp- located along Highway 101 in North Bend (free)
Coos Art Museum
We have culture too!! Our museum has permanent galleries such as the Prefontaine Gallery.
Check out their website for dates and other exhibitions in 2013.
Ken Means Carousel
Enjoy nearly 2 dozen full-sized carousel figures by the master wood carver from Coquille, Oregon. Exhibition contains drawings, works in progress and other carousel art works.
Color Me Baron- Retrospective of Paintings and Drawings by Oregon Painter, Jerry Baron
This retrospective by Oregon painter Jerry Baron includes paintings and drawings spanning a period of over 30 years. He has exhibited his works in Montana, Idaho, Colorado, Washington and Oregon, including 10 years in Portland’s Pearl District, the city’s center for art galleries. He has also had two one-person exhibits at the Jacobs Gallery in the Hult Center for the Performing Arts in Eugene. The exhibition features 65 paintings and 95 drawings.
Annual art competition for high school students from throughout southern Oregon. Sponsored in part by Southwestern Oregon Community College Foundation.
15th Annual National Maritime Art Exhibition of the American Society of Marine Artists.
The exhibition features over 120 works by Americas leading maritime artists. Coos Art Museum will be the only participating museum directly on the Pacific Coast to host this traveling National Exhibition.
Coos Bay Longshoremen Historical Photos
Boat Builders Association of Coos Bay
Oregon Coast Ship Wrecks– Coos Historical and Maritime Center
An exhibition of glass artists of the Oregon Coast, curated by Victoria Tierney.
These are just some of the displays and shows that the museum has to offer.
Hiking Around Coos Bay
Hiking directly from our campground is not recommended. You are hiking into an area where the traffic is primarily ATV's. You do not have a 9 foot flag to announce your presence to off road riders. However, there are many spectacular hiking options easily accessible by car from the campground. Check out the link below to see what our area has to offer.
Tidepooling Around Coos County
A great place to explore tidepools is Simpson Beach, situated directly below Shore Acres, a winding path takes you to this secluded ocean cove. You’ll find crashing waves, migrating whales, and views of hundreds of seals & sea lions and other wildlife. Please do not bother the seal pups you may find on the beach. Explore the link below to find tide pooling options in our area.
Bandon Dunes Golf Resort
At Bandon Dunes Golf Resort, where the Pacific Ocean meets the rugged shoreline of the Southern Oregon Coast, five distinct courses await you.
The game of golf was born on rugged, wind-swept land just like this. Every hole, every hazard, every shot is defined by nature's infinite presence. As the elements change, so does the game. It's all part of the tradition of links golf. Lies are tight and conditions are lean. Bounce and roll are a much better measure of quality than color. Mastery of the ground game becomes a more important skill than raw power. The ingenious and inventive player is rewarded with multiple options on nearly every shot. Amongst the massive dunes and hearty pines, you'll discover golf in its purest state. Where nature is embraced, not conquered. And where the traditions of a time-honored game yield to an experience unlike any other.
Marshfield Sun Printing Museum
The Marshfield Sun Printing Museum opens it doors for the 2013 summer season. Open Tuesday through Saturday 1.pm. - 4p.m. Memorial Day through Labor Day. Volunteers are always on hand during Museum open hours to interpret and demonstrate the Marshfield Sun’s presses and other printing equipment, as well as to answer questions about the Museum’s exhibits on printing and office technology, and on local history.
The Marshfield Sun Printing Museum is a unique printing museum located at the north end of Front Street on Coos Bay’s historic waterfront. The Marshfield Sun was a working newspaper office and print shop from 1891 to 1944 and is today essentially as it was left in 1944, with additional exhibits upstairs and on the walls.
Admission is free but donations are encouraged. Open Tues – Sat 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. Other times available by appointment
West Coast Game Park
Experience West Coast Game Park, the original walk thru Safari, where visitors meet, pet, film, and walk among hundreds of free-roaming wildlife.
Visitors of all ages are amazed, entertained and astonished by the original and innovative way of meeting, petting and seeing wildlife. We offer an unsurpassed experience in meeting the wild and a one-of-a-kind, lasting memory in getting to know our animals.
While hand raising and presenting the wild has been our specialty, visitors can also expect to see an extensive array of majestic lions, tigers, bears, snow leopards, chimps, black panthers, cougars, lynx, bison, camels, zebras and elk, to name a few.
Pet a cub, a pup or kit, enjoy and meet the many and varied species of youngsters presented by park attendants for an extra special, personal interaction with nature’s wildlife.
Watson Ranch Golf Course
Open year-round, Watson Ranch Golf (formerly known as Coos Country Club) has offered spectacular golf on the Southern Oregon coast since 1923. Golfers will discover 18 unique and challenging holes designed by H. Chandler Egan and Bill Robinson.Known as the "Best Kept Secret on the Oregon Coast," the facility also features a driving range, chipping area and two practice putting greens. Located five miles south of Coos Bay along Hwy. 101 (milepost 243.5) on Coos Sumner Lane, just 20 minutes north of the Bandon Dunes Golf Resort.
Local Fishing Opportunities 45 minutes or less from the campgorund
There are many fishing opportunities in our area. Ten Mile Lake offers world class Bass Fishing and is 20 minutes away by car. Various fresh water streams and other small lakes have trout and other options. 30 minutes away by car there are numerous ocean fishing options. Let us know how we can help plan your fishing adventure.