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|Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area|
IUCN category V (protected landscape/seascape)
|Nearest city||North Bend, Oregon|
|Area||31,566 acres (12,774 ha)|
|Established||March 23, 1972|
|Visitors||roughly 1,500,000 (in 2005)|
|Governing body||United States Forest Service|
|Website||Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area|
The Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area (or NRA) is located on the Oregon Coast, stretching approximately 40 miles (60 km) north from the Coos River in North Bend, to the Siuslaw River, in Florence. The NRA is part of Siuslaw National Forest and is administered by the United States Forest Service. The dunes adjoin Honeyman State Park.
The Oregon Dunes are a unique area of windswept sand that is the result of millions of years of wind and rain erosion on the Oregon Coast. These are the largest expanse of coastal sand dunes in North America. Some dunes tower up to 500 feet (150 m) above sea level, providing numerous recreational opportunities including off-road vehicle use, hiking, photography, fishing, canoeing, horseback riding, and camping. The Carter Dunes Trail and Oregon Dunes Day Use provide disabled access for forest visitors.
In 1963, Congressman Robert B. Duncan introduced a bill to establish a National Park at the Oregon Dunes. It passed the Senate Interior Committee unanimously. Senator Wayne Morse opposed provisions of the bill that would have increased environmental protections by restricting property uses.
Author Frank Herbert was inspired (in part) to write the famous science fiction novel Dune based on his research about the dunes of this area.
An aerial view of the dunes near Coos Bay.
Sand dunes in the Recreation Area just outside Reedsport
Jessie M. Honeyman Memorial State Park and part of Cleawox Lake, south of Florence
Banshee Hill is the highest dune in Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area at 500 feet elevation.
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