Tag Archives: Oswald West State Park

The Place of the Supreme Deity, Neahkahnie Mtn.

Neahkahnie Mountain

Neahkahnie Mountain

As you hike the 2.5 mile trail from the Coast Road parking area to the 1,634 foot high summit of Neahkahnie Mountain, imagine the Tillamook Indians who named this place and depended on the large trees, deer and elk which thrive here. Long before Spanish explorers landed on the beach, now known as Oswald West State Park, natives knew how to harvest the treasures found here. They set fires to clear the trees. As sunshine appeared on the fertile slopes, tender vegetation grew and attracted large animals.
In the late 1800’s, pioneers followed the same practice to create grazing land for cattle and sheep. At least one major forest fire developed on Neahkahnie during the Tillamook Burn of 1930. Due to the favorable temperatures along the Pacific Coast, the forest regenerates quickly.
Archeologists and treasure hunters have been curious about Neahkahnie Mountain due to a legend about Spanish gold being buried there in the 1600’s. In fact some Spanish artifacts from the 1870’s were found. It is no longer legal to dig anywhere on or near the mountain. You can experience gold fever, however; a movie, “Tillamook Treasure” was filmed there in 2006.
Some writers also consider Neahkahnie Mountain as sacred. In the past Soapstone Writers have offered a quiet retreat house near the mountain to writers who send a convincing application.
The real treasure of Neahkahnie is the view from the peak. You might make a loop by hiking from the north or south, continuing down the other side and returning to your start by walking one mile along Highway 101.

View of Manzanita Beach from Neahkahnie Mtn.

View of Manzanita Beach from Neahkahnie Mtn.