Conditions: North Central South Gorge
  Cams & Sat: Satellite Coast Gorge
  Charts: Coast Gorge
Levi Siver - Credits: AWT, Si Crowther.
Levi Siver - Credits: AWT, Si Crowther.
Levi Siver - Credits: AWT, Si Crowther.
Levi Siver - Credits: AWT, Si Crowther.
Levi Siver. Credits: AWT
Levi Siver. Credits: AWT
Credits: AWT, Sicrowther.
Credits: AWT, Sicrowther.

Pistol River

South Oregon Coast

Season: April - September
Wind: North
Style: Bump & Jump
Best For: Windsurfing, Kiting
  
 Live Cams
 Conditions

Located 15 mn south of Gold Beach, just south of Cape Sebastian is Pistol River State Park. This is also a turn off right on 101. Just south of Cape Sebastian you will cross Meyers creek up on your right about 1000 yards there is a large rock on the beach that looks like a big loaf of bread. This is the launch. There will be sailors here if it is sailable. The waves here can get poundy and the wind is usually on shore. If it is a bigger day do not let this place be your first experience on the coast.

To get there from the North, take I5 south, then 20 miles passed Eugene, take exit 162 for Highway 38 towards Reedsport. Then catch the 101 and drive south for 2 hours.

From the San Francisco area, take 101 North all the way up. Stop in the redwoods for a scenic break.

Overview

Pistol River is the uncontested bump and jump spot of the area where windsurfers come to defy the rules of gravity, many will succeed, some are still in orbit. Don't miss the Pistol River Wave Bash each June.

Pros will regularly show up. Be ready to launch the biggest jumps of your life, fueled by the nuclear winds the area can dish. Wave sail at the cape when your knees can't take it anymore.

What makes the place truely unique is that you can pick your activity within a nile: bump and jump at Face Rock, or wave sail the Cape a mile north. Beginners can enjoy the Cape when it's small or flat.

Current Conditions: South Oregon Coast

Weather Forecast: South Oregon Coast Forecast

Forecast Charts (MM5): Oregon Coast MM5 Forecast Chart

Wind & Surf

This stretch of the coast is the windiest spot of the state. While the Columbia Gorge has the spotlight, make no mistake: stats wise Pistol River blows consistently more ofen and doesn't require to drive east and west on the I84. Ah, but yes, it requires an overnight trip. Only the locals get the after work sessions. Most of us will have to drive there.

If the NWS forecast calls for any N wind, then read the local MM5 forecast because that's the most reliable way to tell.

Wind is a solid bet from May to September, almost every day. Bring small gear. Most sessions in the afternoon will be on 4.7 ro 3.7. Morning sessions can be 5.2.

Primarily a beach break, poundy, walled up. If the waves are too big, you can wave sail Cape Sebastian a mile north. It's a bit more onshore, this is a place to launch big jumps.

Long period swells will be found May, early June and September, either from the SW or from the W/NW (most likely). SW swells make the place magic (especially at the cape) but expect long lulls. Occasionally, the NPAC will serve juicy waves in the summer months. 

Bring spare gear so you don't find yourself stranded in the parking lot watching your buddies get all the action. Pace yourself, the wind will blow from 9 am to nightfall.

Pistol River Wave Bash

The place is so good and so consistent that the American Windsurfing Tour created the Pistol River Wave Bash, and has run the event here every June since 2009. 

Here's the 2014 video from the Pistol River Wave Bash.

Pistol River Wave Bash from American Windsurfing Tour on Vimeo.

 

Where to Stay

Trips to Pistol River usually require overnight arrangments.

  • Free overnight camping can be found at the Gold Beach fairground, 
  • Multiple camp options in Gold Beach
  • Motels and Inns in Gold Beach - call early during the wave bash.

Map and Directions

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