Where can I metal detect?

Areas without a permit:

Metal detecting without a permit is allowed in specific areas of Oregon State Parks and the ocean shores. The list below identifies those sites. The list may change and we encourage you to check this webpage before you head out.

Areas with a permit:

Areas not included on the list may be open to metal detecting with an approved permit. Please contact the park staff to discuss the area and obtain a permit if metal detecting is allowed. Some parks are unstaffed, so to locate the closest park office to the park you're interested in, call 1-800-551-6949, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday-Friday.

Oregon Administrative Rules for metal detecting:

OAR 736-010 -0040 Visitor Conduct (8) (d) and (11)

  • The use of metal detectors without a permit is allowed only in areas designated in the list below.
  • All federal and state antiquity laws must be obeyed.
  • Shipwrecks are protected archaeological sites.ORS 358.920
  • If you find an item of possible historic or cultural significance, leave the item where you found it. Please contact park staff.
  • The probing and digging for items is limited to the use of an ice pick, screwdriver or small knife. The use of larger digging tools is prohibited.
  • All turf, dirt, etc. must be left in the original condition after digging.
  • All articles found in state parks having a value of over $100 must be turned over to the Park Manager. 
  • The cutting of vegetation and driving of motor vehicles to the digging site is prohibited.

Coast Sites

Detecting Allowed Without a Permit:

Note: Shipwrecks are protected archaeological sites. ORS 358.920

Location Description
North Coast
Ocean Shores - excluding Fort Stevens SP Beach area from the vegetation line seaward -- wet sand, open sandy areas. No digging allowed in cliffs.
Mid-Coast
Ocean Shores Beach area from the vegetation line seaward -- wet sand, open sandy areas. No digging allowed in cliffs.
Munson Creek Falls SNS  Mowed lawn areas and developed picnic sites only
Neskowin Beach SRS  Mowed lawn areas and developed picnic sites only
Gleneden Beach SRS Mowed lawn areas and developed picnic sites only
Ellmaker Wayside Mowed lawn areas and developed picnic sites only
Agate Beach SRS  Mowed lawn areas and developed picnic sites only
WB Nelson SRS  Mowed lawn areas and developed picnic sites only
Driftwood Beach SRS Mowed lawn areas and developed picnic sites only
Gov. Patterson Memorial SRS Mowed lawn areas and developed picnic sites only
Central Coast
Ocean Shores Beach area from the vegetation line seaward-- wet sand, open sandy areas. No digging allowed in cliffs.
Honeyman SP Group Camp All developed areas
Siltcoos ATV All developed areas
North Jetty All developed areas
Elk Creek Tunnel All developed areas
South Coast
Ocean Shores - excluding Sunset Bay SP,
Cape Arago SP, Seven Devils SRS,
Arizona Beach SRS, Pistol River SSV,
Harris Beach SP
Beach area from the vegetation line seaward-- wet sand, open sandy areas. No digging allowed in cliffs.
Sunset Bay SP Upland area within closed camping loops
Golden & Silver Falls SNA Parking lot, picnic area and trail surfaces
Face Rock SSV All developed areas
Albert Powers All developed areas
Hoffman Memorial Wayside All developed areas
Paradise Point SRS All developed areas
Otter Point SRS All developed areas
McVay Rock SRS All developed areas
Winchuck SRS All developed areas

 

Portland Area Sites  

Detecting Allowed Without a Permit:

Location Description
Milo McIver SP Riverbend Day-Use Area Disc golf course and day-use shelters when not in use or occupied
Milo McIver SP Equestrian Lot/Barn field Area between the gravel road and the main road
Milo McIver SP Viewpoint Developed area only
Coalca Landing Greenway Developed area only
Wapato Access Developed area only
Bonnie Lure SRA Developed area only

 

Willamette Valley Sites

Detecting Allowed Without a Permit:

Location Description
Bald Peak SSV Developed picnic sites and parking lot area
Lowell SRS Developed areas. Oak grove and anything west of oak grove prohibited
Jasper SRS Developed areas. Area east of ball field in east end of park and north
and south of that same ball field prohibited. Area west of the western ball
field near the park entrance prohibited.
State Capitol SP The area that lies between Court St on the south, Center St on the north
and between E. Summer St and W. Summer St. East and West. Summer
Streets are the travel lanes on the mall that flank the State Office buildings.
The Willson Park area is prohibited.

 

Central Oregon Sites

Detecting Allowed Without a Permit:

Location Description
North Central
The Cove Palisades SP-Crooked River Day Use Developed day-use areas (turf, swim-beach areas only)
The Cove Palisades SP-Upper Deschutes Day Use Developed day-use areas (turf, swim-beach areas only)
The Cove Palisades SP-Lower Deschutes Day Use Developed day-use areas (turf, swim-beach areas only)
Peter Skene Ogden State Scenic Viewpoint Turf-area only
Smith Rock SP Main day-use area - turf area only
Dyer State Park Day-use area - turf area only
High Desert
Cline Falls SSV Developed areas
Pilot Butte SSV Green space and old gravel pit area nort of the green space that is on the eastside of the park
LaPine SP Developed areas of camp loops except occupied campsites
South Central
Joseph Stewart SP Allowed in closed loops of the developed campground and developed areas in day use area 'A'

 

Eastern Oregon Sites

Detecting Allowed Without a Permit:

Location Description
North East
Hilgard Junction SP All mowed lawn areas except occupied campsites
Hat Rock SP Mowed lawn areas of east side of park, excluding picnic areas A and B if they are reserved
Wallowa Lake SP Vacant campsites during Discovery Season and by registered campers only
South East
Clyde Holliday Developed day-use area