The historic 804 trail runs just outside your room at the Overleaf Lodge. Before Highway 101 was built traffic used County Road 804 to get from Alsea Bay to Yachats. Travelers crossed the Bay on ferry. At low tide they drove six miles on the sandy beach from Waldport to the basalt bench where Yachats begins. There, they drove the 804 south to the Yachats River where the 804 curled inland and up the rich farm valley. Those who wanted to continue further south could ford the river or use canoes or other water craft.
In the 1930’s, Hwy. 101 was built and the 804 became a foot path. It continued in uninterrupted use until the 1970’s when a long legal battle to have the trail vacated began. In the mid-1980’s the high court ruled that the trail must be continued and 804 Trail North became part of the Oregon State Parks Department.
A similar prolonged legal battle over the south end of the trail began in the 1990’s and was finally settled through mediation with the bordering home owners. Now that section extends from Smelt Sands south to the Yachats River.
It is now possible to walk from your room at the Overleaf Lodge all the way to town following nearly the same path the Indians and early pioneers did. The more ambitious may then go to the highway, cross the bridge, turn right on Ocean Road to walk a paved and gravelled path for a mile following the ocean.