Heceta Head

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Heceta Head and lighthouse surrounded by salal meadows, rhododendrons and Sitka spruce groves with Parrot Rock to the left

Heceta Head (/həˈstə/ hə-SEE-tə) is a headland that stands 1,000 feet (300 m) above the Pacific Ocean in Lane County, Oregon, United States. The Heceta Head Light is located on its south side. Heceta Head is named after the Basque explorer under Spanish Commission, Bruno de Heceta, who explored the Pacific Northwest in the 1770s.[1] The headland marks the end of a lower-lying stretch of the coastline to the south dominated by sand dunes; the coastline to the north is more varied.[2] Devils Elbow is the bay south of the headland at the mouth of Cape Creek, and with the headland formed Devils Elbow State Park, which is now part of Heceta Head Lighthouse State Scenic Viewpoint.[3][4]

Historic structures[edit]

Cape Creek Bridge, at the heart of Heceta Head Lighthouse Scenic Viewpoint, is the first bridge in the world to have zinc thermal sprayed over the entire structure.[5]

Heceta Head Light, the assistant lightkeepers’ house, and two bridges located near the headland are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Big Creek Bridge brings U.S. Route 101 across Big Creek, about 2 miles (3 km) north of the headland. Cape Creek Bridge carries U.S. 101 across Cape Creek, just south of the headland.

Heceta Head Light, a lighthouse, is 205 feet (62 m) up the headland. Built in 1894, the 56-foot (17 m) lighthouse shines a beam visible for 21 miles (34 km) out to sea, making it the strongest light on the Oregon Coast.[4]


  1. ^ Bannan, Jan Gumprecht (2002). Oregon State Parks. The Mountaineers Books. p. 58. ISBN 0-89886-794-0. 
  2. ^ Byrne, John V. (September 1964). "An Erosional Classification for the Northern Oregon Coast". Annals of the Association of American Geographers. Blackwell Publishing. 54 (3): 144–145. ISSN 0004-5608. JSTOR 323856. doi:10.2307/323856. 
  3. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Devils Elbow
  4. ^ a b "Heceta Head Lighthouse State Scenic Viewpoint". Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. Retrieved March 18, 2009. 
  5. ^ Berndt, Christopher C.; Bernecki, Thomas F. (1993). Thermal spray coatings: research, design, and applications : proceedings of. ASM International. p. 675. ISBN 0-87170-470-6. Retrieved September 15, 2009. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 44°08′20″N 124°07′35″W / 44.13889°N 124.12639°W / 44.13889; -124.12639