Devils Churn is an ocean-worn crack in a massive basalt flow created by a volcano 37 million years ago.
Seventy-five yards wide at its mouth, the chute slices 200 yards inland, narrowing to just three or four feet before ending at the base of Cape Perpetua towering above.
The churn’s wild waves draw thousands of people a year to the Forest Service day-use area. Visitors can view the action from platforms above or walk down a long, paved path to a series of steps leading to the basalt and the water’s edge. Steve Allen, 67, of Walnut Creek, California, was visiting there Sept. 9 with his wife, Linda.
They walked the path to the bottom. Steve Allen told Linda he was going ahead to check things out, picking his way east around a corner on the south edge of the chute. He got to within 30 feet of the end.