Oregon Coast Beach Connection - lodging, dining, news, events and more

Wild Skies and Beaches this Weekend on Oregon Coast


Covering 180 miles of Oregon coast travel: Astoria, Seaside, Cannon Beach, Manzanita, Nehalem, Wheeler, Rockaway, Garibaldi, Tillamook, Oceanside, Pacific City, Lincoln City, Depoe Bay, Newport, Waldport, Yachats & Florence.


Secrets of the Season

Wild Skies and Beaches this Weekend on Oregon Coast

Landscape east of Lincoln City: this may not be a bad place to look for the meteor shower

To see an update on more oddities washing ashore, click here

(Oregon Coast) – There's more than Labor Day Weekend going on.

A host of stunning, even strange natural events are in store for the final weekend of summer on the Oregon coast, with tourists to the area in a position to witness shooting stars, an ocean burp, strange fish behavior, and maybe even glowing sand or the occasional baby shark washing up on shore.

A wide array of interesting examples of nature have been occurring recently, and this coming weekend promises even more.

Breathtaking high panoramic beach views from oceanfront rooms, spacious family suites & fully equipped cottages.  Known for gracious hospitality, the sparkling clean Sea Horse features a heated indoor pool, dramatic oceanfront spa, great whale watching, free deluxe continental breakfast, conference room, free casino shuttle & HBO.  Fireplaces, private decks and spas are available in select rooms.  Close to shops, golf, fishing & restaurants.  Pets are welcome in select rooms.  Senior discounts.  Kids 18 and under stay free in their parent's room.  Very attractive rates.

20 gorgeous homes sleep up to 18; doubled that with some side-by-side homes. Some pet friendly. Cottages to massive homes; new oceanfront to renovated historic beach houses. All over central coast w/ Lincoln City, Otter Rock, Boiler Bay and Nye Beach. Long list of features, including barbecues, large decks, antique furnishings, wood stoves, gas fireplaces, hardwood floors, Jacuzzis and hot tubs. Most have movies, music, books. Gift basket w/ goodies in each

Saturday morning will feature the Aurigid meteor showers throughout the western U.S. and much of the world, visible here from about 4:06 a.m. to 5:06 a.m. Some astronomers are predicting it could yield as many as 2000 meteors in that time period, often with dazzling colors.

Gearhart, where looking for glowing sand and the shooting stars is not a bad idea

This meteor shower happens once every two thousand years, so exactly how this will pan out is not certain.

On the coast, weather permitting, the skies will be much clearer than they are in the valley areas, allowing for much more intense viewing in these areas. The sunrise and presence of the moon may make seeing the display a little more difficult, however.

Astronomers advise to look in the east and northeast. So, many of the prime high vantage points along the coast that are normally good for viewing shooting stars may not work as well. Spots like Neahkahnie Mountain above Manzanita or Cape Foulweather near Newport have large chunks of land behind them, covering up the eastern views.

It is suggested to go to dark beach areas with low-lying eastern mountains, like Lincoln City, Waldport or the areas north of Gearhart on the north coast. (To see pictures of the recent lunar eclipse from the coast, click here).

A rare shot of the glowing phytoplankton, taken by Tiffany Boothe of Seaside Aquarium, while pouring wet sand and photographing it with a low shutter speed

STARFISH POINT Newport - Offers only the finest in luxury condominium lodging. Every unit is focused on the beauty of the sea and the beach.
All units boast two bedrooms, two bathrooms, designer kitchens, wireless broadband Internet, fireplaces, Jacuzzi’s and private decks. Friendly staff dedicated to high quality and superb customer service. 140 NW 48th Street, Newport. (541) 265-3751. (800) 870-7795. www.starfishpoint.com

If you want sparks above and below, the nighttime is also a good time to check the beaches for the legendary “glowing sand” effect that has been hitting the Oregon coast recently. Find a sandy beach with little or no interference from the moon or manmade lights, and you may run across tiny, faint green/blue sparks that come up from your feet as you scuff them along the sand. Look for wet sand, somewhat near the tide line – but not at the tide line. However, sometimes this has been seen far from the tide line, such as a night last summer when BeachConnection.net spotted it just beneath the cliffs of Nye Beach.

It’s a spectacular, weird sight that causes people to uniformly shriek with delight when they first spot it.

The critters creating the "glowing sand" may be especially spectacular in bays like the Nehalem Bay

Sometimes, pools of sea water that have standing for much of the day are excellent plays to find this effect, which is caused by tiny phytoplankton called dinoflagelettes. If they’re in abundance there, it can look like small galaxies exploding beneath your feet for a second or two.

The dinoflagelettes are bioluminescent, meaning they give off light like fireflies. These occur more frequently in warmer, summer months, especially in later summer and the famed “second summer” – where the fall months are actually the warmest time on the Oregon coast.

If they’re present when you run your hand through bays like Nehalem Bay, they make an eerie glowing trail behind you in the water.

A vast array of eggs from the ocean burp (photo Tiffany Boothe)

Weiss' Paradise Suites & Vacation Rentals - Seaside

Unique Luxury Accommodations in Seaside. 1BR Suites, 1BR & 2BR Duplex Units and 3BR Houses, units for 2-8 people. Rent entire property for 20-26. Close to beach, river and Broadway St.
Suites are designed for two adults; vacation rental units for families. All units have kitchen and many have fireplace, deck and jetted tub. Comfy robes, slippers, luxury bath amenities, quality linens and more. 741 S. Downing St., Seaside. 800-738-6691. www.SeasideSuites.com

Another spectacular occurrence of Mother Nature happened in recent days, when an “ocean burp” tossed up a bevy of odd items – both inanimate and alive – onto the beaches of Seaside. This is when a deep water upwelling of cold water pushes a variety of objects and creatures higher towards the top of the ocean, and the currents bring this debris and cornucopia of stuff onto the beach. Its technical name is detritus.

Tiffany Boothe, of the Seaside Aquarium, said the oceanic stuff happened Wednesday night at the cove area of Seaside.

The ocean burp at the cove

“It is scattered out over a large part of the beach and in some places five inches thick,” she said. “This particular burp had more shells in it than I had ever seen in the past. Most of the shells were smaller snail shells about one half to 1 inch in size. Though the burp occurred yesterday evening it most likely won't wash away all at once, and in fact will probably be around for the weekend.

“So if you like shells head on down to the cove.”

Inn at Cannon Beach. Beautifully wooded natural setting at quiet south end of Cannon Beach. Great during winter storms with a new book by the fireplace – or when the sun is out for family fun and beach strolling. Handsome beach cottage-style architecture. Lush flowering gardens and naturalized courtyard pond. Warm, inviting guest rooms. Continental buffet breakfast. Warm Cookies. Family and Pet Friendly. Welcome gifts. Smoke-free. Complimentary Wireless Connectivity. Wine and book signing events. 800-321-6304 or 503-436-9085. Hemlock At Surfcrest, Cannon Beach, Oregon. www.atcannonbeach.com.

Boothe said this ocean burp brought up a large amount of Dungeness crab, pieces of brain coral, starfish, hermit crabs, tub worm casings and sponges.

Crabs and starfish lying around Seaside, part of the burp (photo: Boothe)

“If you are collecting shells you may want to make sure that you inspect them carefully,” Boothe said. “Hermit crabs hide very well and you may end up with something that smells quite unpleasant.”

Boothe also recently told BeachConnection.net about an unusually large amount of dead sharks that have washed up on the north Oregon coast. Three salmon sharks, four soupin sharks and one great white were discovered in various areas, from Rockaway Beach up to southern Washington. Staff at the aquarium theorized that this year’s warmer waters have brought in more tuna, which in turn have brought in more sharks to the area – thus more will wash up dead. (More on the discovery that one shark turned out to be a great white here - as well as more about a decomposing whale, porpoise, a baby seal and more sharks that have washed up since this story was published)

However, Bill Hanshumaker, Public Marine Education Specialist with the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport said an alarmingly large amount of baby salmon sharks have washed up on the central coast.

Dead salmon shark pup: the entire coast has been seeing a lot of these washing up lately

Lincoln City Vacation Homes Something for everyone: smaller homes with a view to a large house that sleeps 15. All are either oceanfront or just a few steps away – all with a low bank access and fantastic views. Most are in the Nelscott area; one is close to the casino. You’ll find a variety of goodies: fireplaces, multiple bedrooms, dishwashers, Jacuzzis, washer/dryers, hot tubs, cable TV, VCR, barbecues; there’s a loft in one, and another sprawling home has two apartments. Pets allowed in some homes – ask first. Each comes with complete kitchens. Most have seventh night free. Prices range from winter $85 to summer $230 per night. www.getaway2thecoast.com. 541-994-8778.

“I have had more than a half dozen reports of dead baby great white sharks,” Hanshumaker said. “Without exception, these turn out to be baby salmon shark pups. Though I typically see one or two every summer, this year’s higher number of dead pups is unusual. Salmon Shark pup are identified by their secondary keel and non-serrated teeth.”

Something similar has been happening in central California, where a large amount of dead baby sharks have been washing up there as well. But necropsies done on the creatures have revealed they had encephalitis, a disease of the brain.

Anchovies in a panic in the estuary at Seaside (photo: Tom Horning)

Also in the unusual nature category, a pair of fishermen spotted a giant Leatherback Sea Turtle ambling around the waters off Garibaldi in recent days. This is an extremely rare occurrence, even though their consistent presence off the Oregon coast is a well-kept secret.

Tom Horning, with the Natural History Center in Seaside, said there was another spectacular anchovy run about a month ago with fish so manic they actually hopped out of the water.

Pelicans herding the anchovies in the estuary (photo Horning)

“The fish acted differently this time, periodically to nearly continuously having mass panic attacks and flipping out of the water, mostly as the tide retreated and the fish were trapped by shoals,” Horning said. “Maybe there was some spawning going on, but they certainly would go nuts when the pelicans flew overhead.”

Horning said the pelicans swarmed around the river and literally herded them. “The pelicans were seen on the river, pushing the fish against the bank, trapping them there, and easily scooping them up for dinner,” Horning said.

A1 Beach Rentals, Lincoln City. Perfect for large family vacations all the way down to a getaway lodging for two - with over 25 vacation rental homes to choose from. A breathtaking collection of craftsman or traditional beachfront homes, or oceanview houses – from one to seven bedrooms. In various areas of Lincoln City and overlooking the beach, with some in Depoe Bay. All kinds of amenities are available, like hot tubs, decks, BBQ, rock fireplaces, beamed ceilings and more. Some are new, some are historic charmers. Lincoln City, Oregon. 1-(503)-232-5984. www.a1beachrentals.com.

Arch Cape Property Services. Dozens of homes in that dreamy, rugged stretch between Cannon Beach and Manzanita known as Arch Cape. Oceanfront and ocean view , or just a short walk from the sea.
All homes are immaculate and smoke free; some pet friendly (with a fee). Some with broadband, indoor or outdoor hot tubs, fireplaces, decks, and fire pits or barbecues. Call about tempting winter specials that go until March (not valid holidays, however). www.archcaperentals.com 866-436-1607.

D Sands Condominium Motel, Lincoln City. Free, fresh baked cookie upon check-in is just the start. All rooms beachfront and up against Lincoln City's most famous stretch of beach: the D River. Each room comes as a suite or mini-suite, and has a kitchen and balcony or patio. Some w/ gas fireplaces, while all have a DVD Players; movies to rent come with free popcorn. Heated indoor pool, a spa, and this fabulous beach is lit at night. Rooms sleep from two, four to six - including a deluxe fireplace suite. Gift certificates orspecial occasion packages. www.dsandsmotel.com. 171 S.W. Highway 101. 800-527-3925.

Tradewinds Motel, Rockaway Beach. All rooms are immaculate and have TV’s, VCR’s and in-room phones w/ data ports. Oceanfronts have queen bed, a double hide-a-bed, kitchen, cozy firelog fireplace and private deck. Both types sleep up to four people. Others are appointed for a two-person romantic getaway, yet still perfect for those on a budget. Elaborate oceanfront Jacuzzi suite has two bedrooms, kitchen, double hide-a-bed, fireplace and private deck, sleeping as many as six. For family reunions or large gatherings such as weddings, some rooms can connect to create two-room and three-room suites. Some rooms pet friendly. 523 N. Pacific St., Rockaway Beach. (503) 355-2112 - 1-800-824-0938. www.tradewinds-motel.com

The Ocean Lodge. There will not be another property built like this in Cannon Beach in our lifetimes. Rare, premiere ocean front location; handsome, dramatic architecture and tasteful, fun (nostalgic) beach interiors. Overlooks Haystack Rock. 100 percent smoke free. Imaginative special occasion packages. Massive wood burning lobby fireplace. Library w/ fireplace, stocked with impressive book collection. Pet and family friendly. Lavish continental buffet breakfast. In-room fireplaces, mini-kitchens. Jacuzzi tubs in select rooms. DVD players, complimentary movies. Morning paper. Warm cookies. 888-777-4047. 503-436-2241. 2864 Pacific Street. Cannon Beach, Oregon. www.theoceanlodge.com


Prepare for Freaky, Creepy Mole Crabs on Oregon Coast Beaches The little critters make the tideline bubble and feel really weird as they run across your feet

Watching Transformations of Oregon Coast Beaches Seasons change and so do beaches, revealing different sides and a variety of eye-popping sights

Structures Found on Oregon Beach May Be 80,000 Years Old - They are the remnants of a forest apparently 80,000 years old, found at Hug Point

Day or Night Mysteries and Merriment on Oregon Coast It's more than just nightlife that comes to life, but the beaches offer major opportunities

Oregon Coast Travel Site Goes Wireless Provides Lodging Reports - Oregon Coast Beach Connection now has mobile lodging and dining listings, along with weekly lodging availability reports

Back to Oregon Coast Beach Connection


oregon coast weather
oregon coast mileage chart & map
day trips, suggested itineraries
Oregon Coast Lodging Specials
Search BeachConnection.net's 1,000 pages
Oregon Coast Real Estate
Oregon Coast Pictures
Atypical Things to Do
Oregon Coast Camping
Seaside, Oregon Lodging
Cannon Beach, Oregon Lodging
Manzanita, Wheeler, Rockaway Beach Lodging
Lincoln City Lodging
Depoe Bay Lodging
Cannon Beach Complete Guide
Lincoln City Complete Guide
Seaside, Oregon Complete Guide

Where the Columbia meets the Pacific, Land of Lewis & Clark and loads of atmosphere & history

The Promenade, Tillamook Head, family fun & broad, sandy beaches

A mysterious lighthouse, upscale yet earthy, a huge monolith, fine eateries & an art mecca

Manzanita's beaches, Nehalem and Wheeler's quirky beauty; laid back Rockaway

Garibaldi, Barview, Bay City, Tillamook & an oceanfront ghost town

The hidden secret of the coast: Cape Meares, a lighthouse, Oceanside, Netarts and Pacific City

Miles & miles of unbroken beaches, Cascade Head, Neskowin and many manmade attractions
A spouting horn downtown, freaky hidden cliffs and whales, whales, whales
Time-tripping Nye Beach, a bustling bayfront, marine science-central and two lighthouses

Pristine, even secretive sands and wild geologic landmarks

Constantly dramatic wave action, a mix of the rugged & upscale

25 miles of deserted beaches & oodles of wonders

A lighthouse, ancient bayfront and miles and miles of fluffy dunes

For over 80 years a favorite of Seaside visitors. 51 oceanfront condos, individually owned and decorated. Suites for couples, small apartments with fireplaces and kitchenettes, one or two bed family units with fireplaces, kitchens and dining rooms. Oceanview cottages sleep anywhere from two to eight, w/ two bedrooms, some with lofts, fireplaces and kitchens. Heated outdoor pool, enormous grounds w/ picnic tables - all at quiet southern end of Seaside.

Lincoln City’s only resort hotel built right on the beach with all oceanfront rooms - nestled against a rugged cliffside overlooking a soft, sandy beach. Dine in penthouse restaurant and bar, for casual meal or candlelight dinner. An array of seafood specialties, juicy steaks and other Northwest favorites, including decadent Sunday buffet. Rooms range from bedrooms to studios to 1-bedroom suites with microwaves and refrigerators to full kitchens. Also, wi-fi, spa, saunas, exercise room and year-round heated swimming pool. Kids will love the game room and easy beach access. Full-service conference/meeting rooms for that inspirational retreat; extensive wedding possibilities.


oregon coast lighthouses on dvd

Oregon Coast event or adventure you can't miss

Newly renovated, 30 upscale rooms, on north end of Lincoln City, close to everything. Spa-like feeling, w/ luxury linens & robes, pillow top mattresses, flat screen TV's, granite counters and more all add to pampering. Oceanfront and ocean view units w/ gas fireplace. Hot Tub units. Romance packages. Luxury Room for every budget: meeting and wedding spaces too.

17 lavish, beachfront suites feature Jacuzzi or outdoor hot tub, gas fireplace, luxury robes & linens, TV, two-headed showers. Three large suites have kitchens. Private deck w/ BBQ available. No smoking or pets. Perfect for romantic getaway, honeymoon.

Feed the seals! One of the oldest aquariums in the U.S. is here in Seaside, Oregon, right on the Promenade