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Just six miles north of the California border, Brookings is often referred to as the Banana Belt of the Pacific Northwest, thanks to its sunny and temperate year-round climate. Unlike the rest of the region, The town's temperatures range from the 70's during summer days and the 40's in the coldest of winter nights. This makes Brookings quite the anomaly in a region otherwise known for rain and fog.
Brookings currently supports a population of approximately 6000 residents, with a median age of forty three years old. Brookings' economy was historically based in lumber and fishing. Although these industries have been replaced by service-oriented sectors, they are still important elements of the local economy. Additionally, the twelve-mile region between Brookings and Smith River, California is the sole provider of every lily bulb produced in North America. With these diverse economic streams, Brookings provides its residents with plentiful jobs, while making the town less dependent on tourism than other towns throughout the Pacific Northwest.
City of Brookings: 5,680
Brookings Harbor area: 14,000
2000-2010 projected change in population 35.2 percent
From the south, turn right at the first street (Constitution Ave) past the Chetco River overpass on Hwy 101; Turn left on North Bank Chetco River rd; Azalea Park is on the right a few hundred feet up the road. A fabulous city park, Azalea is near all 3 public schools and is a great place for kids of all ages. There is a playground, bathrooms, picnic tables, and a covered stage in a natural amphitheater, and softball diamonds.
On Hwy 101 just NW of the Chetco River overpass at Constitution Way. Maintained by volunteers and the Brookings/Harbor Garden Club.
1655 Hwy. 101, Brookings, OR 97415; (541) 469-2021. On U.S. 101 just north of Brookings. Campground open year round. Dump station for RV's. Wheelchair accessible sites. Campsites: 4 yurts; 66 tent sites; 52 electrical sites; and 34 trailer spaces with full utility hookups. The campsite also features a Hiker/biker camp. Hot Showers are available to all campers. Public phones and firewood are available. Even cable TV hookup are at selected sites. Call Reservations Northwest for reservations: 1-800-452-5687.
From Hwy 101 in Brookings, follow the North Bank Chetco River Road about 10 miles (past Loeb State Park) to the Siskiyou National Forest. The Kalmiopsis Wilderness Area is one of five wilderness areas that make up the Siskiyou National Forest. About 5 miles into the National Forest is Little Redwood Campground. Here you will find river access, bathrooms, about 15 drive-in campsites, and a picnic area about 1/4 mile south. This campground is closed in winter.
8 miles NE of Brookings on North Bank Chetco River rd. (541) 469-2021 The Park is adjacent to the Chetco River and offers easy access and drift boat launching via a gravel bar. There is free day use parking and a picnic area. Loeb has 53 electrical sites nestled in an old-growth Myrtle wood forest. Less than a mile farther up the road is the USFS's "Redwood Nature Trail", which connects with Loeb's own "Riverview" trail. Call Reservations Northwest for reservations: 1-800-452-5687.
The Oregon Coast Trail will eventually traverse the entire coast from California to Washington. Over 300 miles are now in use. Many on the beach. Completed or nearly completed sections in Curry County start at Cape Ferrelo and go to a point just north of Humbug State Park.
The harbor is home to commercial fishermen as well as pleasure boaters and sport fishermen via public access ramps. There are slips available also. There is a small public access fishing pier near the Coast Guard station. It is accessible from Boat Basin Road. There are many small shops in the harbor area and of course you can always find fresh seafood here.
This 1-mile loop trail is 1/2 mile past Loeb State Park on North Bank Chetco River Road. From Brookings, take the North Bank Chetco River Road from hwy 101 about 8 miles to Loeb State Park, then continue on for another 1/2 mile or so on the left. This is an easy to moderate hike. There are bathrooms at the entrance.
This beach is situated between the ocean and the harbor and can be accessed by entering the Beachfront RV Park on Boat Basin Road. There is ample free parking and picnic and camping sites are available at the RV park. The surfing is good here and Sporthaven is a good beach for Whale Watching as whale sightings are common in season.
There is excellent body boarding and bodysurfing at Sporthaven Beach and Harris Beach State Park during the summer. The water may be warm enough to go in without a wetsuit...for a short while. From fall to spring, the waves are big and dangerous and the water is cold. If you know what you're doing...come on in! Sporthaven is the most popular surf spot, while Pistol River near Gold Beach offers excellent windsurfing!
Sporthaven Beach, at the harbor, and Harris State Beach are both excellent places to spot whales. Late March and the entire month of April are prime time for catching the Grey Whales as they migrate northward. Some whales even spend the summer in Oregon and can be seen year 'round. December is the time to catch them as they head south for baja.
Chetco Unit HQ) 555 Fifth St., Brookings (800) 412-6000 The Forest Service operates a number of fee and no fee sites. Some of the more popular are Little Redwood, Winchuck, Packers Cabin, Ludlum House and several fire lookouts. Call for Rates and availability.