Located in the western part of the United States, the Pacific States are one of nine geographic divisions of the country recognized by the US Statistical Bureau to aid in the collection of statistical data. As the name suggests, the Pacific States include five states that have coastlines on the Pacific Ocean: Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon, and Washington. Although the Pacific States and the Mountain States are both included as parts of the Western United States, the two divisions are vastly different from each other, even in the field of politics. While the Mountain States are regarded as “red states” (Republican/conservative), all of the Pacific States, except Alaska, are known as “blue states” (Democrat/liberal).
Alaska is one of the two non-contiguous American states, and the only one located in continental North America. The state is located at the extreme northwest of North America, where it shares land borders with Canada to the east. Alaska has an extensive coastline along the Pacific Ocean, making it one of the five Pacific States. Attu Island is the westernmost part of Alaska, and the state’s northern coastline is along the Arctic Ocean, the Beaufort Sea, and the Chukchi Sea. Russia lies across the Bering Strait. The state has an area of 1,717,856 square km and an estimated population of only 741,894. Thus, while the largest US state by land area, it is one of the least populous in the country due to its harsh climate and rugged, mountainous terrain.
With an area of 423,970 square km and a population of 39,536,653, California is the country’s third largest by area and the largest by population. California has a long coastline along the Pacific Ocean, making it one of the five Pacific States. The state shares its other borders with the US states of Nevada, Oregon, and Arizona. California also shares an international border with Mexico to the south. Several of California's coastal cities are among the wealthiest in the country.
Made up of several islands in the Pacific Ocean, Hawaii is the only American state that is not part of continental North America. Hawaii includes eight main islands, several other smaller islands, islets, and related features, which cover a combined area of around 2,400 km. Seven of the eight main Hawaiian islands are permanently inhabited and the state has a total population of 1,428,557. Hawaii's coastline along the Pacific Ocean is 1,210 km long, which ranks fourth in the nation in terms of coastline length. Hawaii attracts a large number of tourists from all corners of the globe, and the state's natural beauty and cultural uniqueness are primary attractions.
Oregon is one of three contiguous US states with coastline along the Pacific Ocean. Oregon has a total area of 254,806 square km and an estimated population of 4,093,465. The Oregon Coast, which extends from the Columbia River in the north to the border of California in the south, has a length pf 584 km. Coos Bay is the biggest city along the coast of Oregon. The state's Pacific Coast exhibits three main features: beaches, stacks, and sea cliffs. A large number of recreation areas and 80 state parks are located along the coast of Oregon.
Located in the northwest region of the USA, Washington is one of the five Pacific States. The state has an area of 184,827 square km, an estimated population of 7,405,743 people, and Olympia is the capital. Nearly 60% of the state’s population resides in the Seattle metropolitan area, which is located near the Puget Sound, a Pacific Ocean inlet featuring deep fjords, bays, and islands. The offshore waters of Washington are rich in marine life, and fishing is an important economic activity.