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Three Arch Rocks National Wildlife Refuge, located a half-mile off the Oregon coast, can be viewed from the mainland at Cape Meares and from Oceanside Beach, in the community of Oceanside. The steep cliffs and grassy rocks are home to wary seabirds and marine mammals, intolerant of human attentions. To prevent disturbance to these sensitive wildlife, Three Arch Rocks is closed to public entry year-round, and waters within 500 feet of the refuge are closed to all watercraft from May 1st through September 15th, during the breeding season.

Although Three Arch Rocks NWR is closed to public entry to protect wildlife, the thronging seabirds and marine mammals found there can be enjoyed with scopes and binoculars from nearby lands. No matter what time of year one visits the Oregon coast, wildlife are plentiful and often easy to see.

A word of warning: Coastal areas, with their steep cliffs, strong currents and heavy surf, can be extremely dangerous. Exercise caution during your visit. Stay away from cliff edges and observe posted warnings.
 

Activities

Although Three Arch Rocks NWR is closed to public entry to protect wildlife, the thronging seabirds and marine mammals found there can be enjoyed with scopes and binoculars from nearby public areas. View the refuge from Cape Meares National Wildlife Refuge or from the beach near Oceanside. 

Trails

Though Three Arch Rocks is closed to the public, hikes at Cape Meares National Wildlife Refuge feature views of Three Arch Rocks. 

Other Facilities in the Complex

Three Arch Rocks National Wildlife Refuge is managed as one of six refuges in the Oregon Coast National Wildlife Refuge Complex. See below for the other five refuges and experience them all.

Refuge Headquarters:

Oregon Coast National Wildlife Refuge Complex
2127 SE Marine Science Drive
Newport, OR 97365
541-867-4550
oregoncoast@fws.gov

What is a Refuge Complex?

A National Wildlife Refuge Complex is a group of two or more refuges, wildlife management areas or other refuge conservation areas that are managed from one central office. Refuges are grouped into a complex because they occur in a similar ecological region, such as a watershed or specific habitat type, and have a related purpose and management needs. 

The Oregon Coast National Wildlife Refuge Complex is managed from our headquarters in Newport, Oregon. The office located at Bandon Marsh NWR serves as a south-coast field office. 

Rules and Policies

Three Arch Rocks National Wildlife Refuge is closed to public entry year-round. Waters within 500 feet of the refuge are closed to all watercraft from May 1st through September 15th to protect wildlife rearing young. Three Arch Rocks NWR is best viewed from the mainland at Cape Meares and from the beach in Oceanside. 

Locations

Three Arch Rocks National Wildlife Refuge
Oregon Coast National Wildlife Refuge Complex 2127 SE Marine Science Drive Newport, OR 97365-5258
Driving Directions

Three Arch Rocks National Wildlife Refuge is closed to the public but it can be viewed safely from shore at Cape Meares and the town of Oceanside. The easiest way to reach the beach and view the refuge is to take Highway 131 out of Tillamook and follow signs to Oceanside and/or Cape Meares.  Do not take BayOcean Road as a section of it is permanently closed due to landslides.