Cape Blanco: Windy West Headland
Port Orford, Oregon
Cape Blanco is a cold and wind-battered cliff jutting out into the Pacific Ocean. We first visited with our fold-up cardboard companion, the 6-ft. Tall Hinged Man. He lost a hand to a particularly fierce gust, and for the rest of the trip he just wasn't the same.
Washington state's Cape Alava is technically the westernmost point in the Lower 48, but Cape Blanco is more convenient to visit. And it's the westernmost point in Oregon. The State Park features the clifftop 1870 lighthouse (open for tours for a small fee), a visitor center, and hiking trails.
Visitors park in a gravel lot, stagger toward structures that might block a fraction of the wind, and then realize that it's too hard or wet to shoot relaxing selfies. The visitor center offers refuge, and sells emergency Cape Blanco sweatshirts and tiny lighthouse replicas. Cape Blanco gets a few calm days a month, but we prefer watching families blown towards the precipice.