Hiking the OCT provides its own spontaneous moments of magic. There is also a type of "trail magic" that good Samaritan volunteers provide, spontaneously or planned: rides to eliminate a long highway stretch, for instance, or camping in someone's backyard (and the chance to refill water bottles) on a long, dry stretch with no campgrounds. Trail angels are people who see an OCT hiker on US 101 and stop to offer a ride, for instance, or who are out boating on the bay and who offer a hiker a short boat shuttle to the tip of a sandspit. Trail angels are also people who offer up their backyard to thru-hikers to set up a tent, especially in a stretch with no legal camping.
Trail angels have long been a welcome fixture on the Pacific Crest Trail and other long-distance trails. Many are former thru-hikers themselves who understand how much a little trail magic means to a long-distance hiker. The Oregon Coast Trail is newer and doesn't yet have a deep bench of veteran hikers looking for ways to pay it back/pay it forward. But the Oregon Coast is full of generous and friendly people willing to help the best kind of tourists: self-propelled travelers seeking to leave no trace as they walk through this landscape we all love.
I hope to assemble a list of coastal residents willing to lend a hand to OCT hikers by the start of the 2022 hiking season--especially people willing to let hikers camp in their backyard where there are no other legal camping options (and possibly no sources of tap water). IF YOU'D LIKE TO KNOW MORE ABOUT BEING A TRAIL ANGEL, please contact me. IF YOU NEED A LITTLE TRAIL MAGIC, check back to this page in spring 2022 to see if anyone has stepped up!
TRAIL ANGELS OFFER TRAIL MAGIC FREELY. Trail angels do not charge for their help to hikers.
HIKERS TYPICALLY OFFER A TRAIL ANGELS A SMALL DONATION to cover costs, such as gas (for drivers) or water/sewer/power/wifi to camping hosts.