How you can help at this location:
General Beach Cleanup
Collect trash and marine debris from the beach and place in provided bags. Carry filled bags above the high tide line and leave them in piles. No special skills are required. Participants must be able to bend repeatedly and pick up and carry items of varying weight and size. For a better idea of what's involved, see our Frequently Asked Questions page.
More Volunteer Options and Information
For more information about helping with volunteer check-in, recycling, and BBQ service, please contact our beach coordinator: Cape.Disappointment (at) parks.wa.gov.
If you would like to take recyclables back home with you, please do. However, please be aware that most recycling companies will not accept highly degraded items or anything filled with wet sand or other beach muck. They only want the really clean household stuff like yogurt cups and plastic water bottles. If you take any debris back with you, be sure to bag it up tightly (stinky), keep it away from curious kids and dogs (messy), and don’t take any sharp items (safety hazard – ouch!).
Cape Disappointment State Park Campsite Information
Cape Disappointment has 137 standard campsites, 60 full hookup sites, 18 sites with water and electricity only, five primitive hiker/biker campsites first come first served only, 14 yurts, three cabins, one dump station, eight restrooms (two ADA), and 14 showers (four ADA). Maximum site length is 45-feet (limited availability). Camping is available year-round.
The 14 yurts at Cape Disappointment are within walking distance of the beach. Each yurt is 16-feet in diameter by 10-feet high and is furnished with bunk beds that sleep three, a full-size futon, floor lamp, small end table, and heater. Outside is a picnic table, fire pit with grate, and a deck that is ADA accessible. All yurts are heated, but visitors should take along blankets and warm clothing as evenings can be cool. An RV pad with hook up nearby is available for an additional fee.
Three cabins are tucked into an alder forest on the shore of Lake O'Neil. Each cabin is furnished with a bunk bed that sleeps three, a full-size futon, and small end table. Each cabin is 13-by-13-feet in size and has a 6-foot covered front porch, picnic table, electric heat, lights, fire pit with grate, and locking doors. Bathrooms and showers are nearby.
To make reservations see: https://washington.goingtocamp.com/CapeDisappointmentStatePark
Benson Beach is wide, flat, and about two miles long, with adjacent camping area and hiking trails that lead to parking lots, lighthouses, and an interpretive center. No driving on the beach.
Participants should wear sturdy shoes and be prepared for cold, windy and rainy weather conditions.
Basic Safety Guideline
- Wear gloves, proper clothing, and water-resistant shoes.
- Do not touch medical waste, dead animals, hazardous materials or sharp objects. If you are uncertain about an item, do not touch it.
- Do not approach wildlife.
- Report hazardous items that cannot be removed to event staff.
- Work with a partner.
- Be careful of unstable banks, steep slopes, or slippery surfaces.
- Do not try to lift anything that is too heavy for you. Ask for help!
- Watch for poison oak, plants with thorns, or other natural hazards.
- Watch for any trucks or equipment that might be used in the project.
- When driving on the beach (State Parks only), stay on compacted sand. Do not drive into sand that is very soft or very wet.
Debris Data Program
The amount and type of debris you find on our beaches gives evidence of its globally diverse sources and its impact on ocean ecosystems. Help us analyze what it all means by participating in our data collection program. If you will be at the cleanup with a group, please download our Debris Data Card and fill out as you clean the beach (also available at check in). One group member should fill out the form while others call out their findings. After the cleanup, simply go online and transfer your findings to our debris database. Collective results will be available online to anyone seeking to understand and reduce the effects of marine debris.
Beach Location and Directions
Benson Beach is located within Cape Disappointment, a 1,882-acre camping park on the south tip of the Long Beach Peninsula. From Ilwaco, follow Hwy 101 south for two miles. Once inside the park, follow North Jetty Road out to the parking area at the beach. See this park map.