Herman Cape Road twists and climbs three mostly-gravel miles to a view of the north end of Oregon's Dune Coast, from a meadow at the top of 1488 foot Cape Mountain. There is a horse camp, and 17 miles of horse trails in the Cape Mountain Trails network. The road continues, connecting with the maze of National Forest Service roads through Oregon's Coast Range.
Herman Cape Road is what the sign at the highway says; after a mile or two it becomes Cape Mountain Road. It's a narrow paved road that leaves the east side of US101 near milepost 182 north of Florence, Oregon. It’s easy to mistake it for a driveway and whiz past it on the highway. Watch for a brown sign indicating Oregon Coast Horse Trails. Watch for horses on or near the road.
Herman Cape Road climbs a forested ridge, sprouts gravel, and becomes Cape Mountain Road. About three miles in, it passes Dry Lake Horse Camp. Stop here for the view meadow walk. Park near the entrance, and the trailhead. The campground features a pit toilet, but no water or trash service.
A (mile-ish?) loop trail leads around the forested mountain. Follow a sign to the summit, where a meadow offers a nice view of the northern portion of Oregon’s Dune Coast. It's worth the detour from the highway for this perspective. Your view sweeps down across the stretch of dunes north of Florence, to the Siuslaw River and the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area to the south.