The Knoll must be earned

Hikers, exhausted by the steep climb, relax in the tall grass of The Knoll. (Photos by Rick Beasley)

LINCOLN CITY — You have to earn the best view at the Oregon coast, where pedometers record a 57-story, two-mile climb to the top of The Knoll, unofficially Lincoln City’s newest and most astonishing attraction.

The challenging trail joins a growing list of eye-opening “open space” hiking in Lincoln City. But unlike the rolling hills of Agnes Creek or the gentle pond loop of Spring Lake, The Knoll is a heart-pounding test of leg strength.

“I love The Knoll,” reflected Lincoln City Mayor Dick Anderson, describing it like an Alpine ascent. “It has different degrees of difficulty to climb and different trails to get to the top. But when you get up there, it’s just a gorgeous vista, and it shows the diversity.”

Below the 500-foot knoll is a rainforest of mossy spruce and alder meadows blanketed with wildflowers. Elk highways interdict the hiking path, once a main road to a long-failed, 1960’s subdivision. Old-timers say there are trails here that most people don’t know about leading to amazing waterfalls and even a moss-covered road that was never used.

Be advised, however, the area is remote. Difficult rescues are frequent as people trip on ancient roots, slip in mud, fall or get lost in the rainforest.

“It gets real steep, fast,” commented Jim Jameson, a dory fisherman who has been exploring the remote woods beyond Roads End since 1980, adding that some turn back when their heels no longer touch the trail.

The city urges hikers to ‘Leave No Trace’, and to be respectful to nearby private landowners. North Lincoln Fire and Rescue recommends a full emergency hiking kit, including a charged cell phone, water, jacket and flashlight.

Take N.E. Devils Lake Road to the very end, where a map sign (below) shows the main trail.


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