Gold Beach is the Northwest’s best source for freshwater and saltwater adventures in one place. It is located on the flat little delta at the mouth of the famed Rogue River. The Coast Range rises abruptly to the east, while a fine black-sand beach borders the Pacific Ocean to the west. With a warm winter climate, freezes and snow are so scarce that Gold Beach has the distinction of having the biggest palm tree in all of the Pacific Northwest. It’s just a few miles inland by the Rogue, one of America’s first designated National Wild and Scenic Rivers.
Gold in the dark sand first attracted miners to this site during the 1870s (which is why the town was named “gold beach.”) However, it was the river that brought permanence to the remote settlement. In 1895, mail boats began to provide postal service to isolated up-river settlers. Freight was soon added, and it wasn’t long before home-cooked meals were being served to river passengers who tagged along to Agness to view the great scenery along the way.
Happily, this tradition continues, with skilled operators of hydro-jet boats offering swift, thrilling whitewater trips deep into the beautiful Rogue River canyon. Gold Beach manages to retain a relentless rusticity that goes back to the days when this town was oriented around fishing camps. Shops (with a few notable exceptions) are still relatively modest. Lodgings range from humble to gracious, many with ocean views. Salmon and steelhead fishing remain the area’s passion, providing great opportunities for sportfishers, and restaurants do fine work with fresh local seafoods.
For more information, go to Gold Beach Chamber of Commerce.
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