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Oregon Coast Unexplained Part Two - Almost Paranormal

Published 06/02/2020 at 4:54 AM PDT
By Andre' GW Hagestedt

Oregon Coast Unexplained Part Two - Almost Paranormal Oregon Coast Unexplained Part Two - Almost Paranormal

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(Portland, Oregon) – In part of one of this wacky, elongated tale, I wrote about the truly odd but very real stuff I encountered on the Oregon coast that slowly drew me in, whipping me up into a state of obsession with these beaches. I delved into my first-hand discoveries of glowing sand, bizarre forms of sea foam and a weird glow on the horizon I saw in the ‘80s that I’ve never been able to explain. (Above: another fun pasttime has been creating goofy fake ghost photos).

It left off in the ‘90s, about ten years before I formed Oregon Coast Beach Connection. Part two begins here. It was in the middle of the decade I moved from photographer to being a writer, and both in turn caused me to create another website back then called the Oregon Coast Alterna-Guide, which caused a bit of a stir for awhile. It was here I began documenting the weird science of the Oregon coast, along with its bars and other unknown aspects, jokingly referring to myself as a “twisted version of Lewis & Clark with a compass in one hand and a drink in the other.” Fun times.

Among the things I dug deeply into were the ghost stories, which is always a unique aspect to tourism.

From there through the early 2000s, I discovered many trippy tales:

There were the myriad hauntings of the Old Wheeler Hotel, which original owner Winston Laszlo regaled me with and other locals whispered about as well. It’s since become a favorite “haunt” of paranormal investigators.

A Pacific City local told me about a legend of a sea monster around Cape Kiwanda, and another individual said there were glowing balls of lightning floating around Coos Bay. Between ’97 and 2000, I did a number of interviews with people on the subject of Astoria, which included UFO sightings and various spirits. The whole town is full of strange tales about hauntings in numerous spots, like the old fire engine house and plenty in the Liberty Theater. It’s fitting that “The Ring II” was filmed there.

There was a ghost ship in Lincoln City’s Siletz Bay, a pissed-off ghost at what was then the Spouting Horn restaurant in Depoe Bay, flying coffee pots in a bar in Seaside and the Warren House in Cannon Beach swears it has an otherworldly resident. Then of course the glorious legends of Bandage Man in Cannon Beach, which has its own hilarious canon. There was also the eye-opening interview I had with famed photographer Steve Gaddis about the ghost at the BnB at Heceta Head Lighthouse that felt more credible than usual.

The two legends that intrigued me the most were the sort of Area 51-like tales of the Van Duzer Corridor and what was called the “Wheeler Moment.”

In that stretch of the central Oregon coast between Grande Ronde and Lincoln City, there were nebulous whispers of people appearing and then disappearing in that winding roadway, and even purported sightings of some military base tucked away in the forest. I’d personally never experienced anything weird there except the bad driving habits of others.

In Wheeler and the Manzanita area, I have to say the Wheeler Moment resonated with me. It made the place akin to the island on LOST, where trippy stuff just happened sometimes if you were thinking about it. Serendipity simply reigned here, like the time my friend who owned a BnB there around 2000 was lamenting her broken pipes, and just then the doorbell rang with a new, inquiring guest. It turned out the guy was a plumber. There were endless stories like that from hotelier Peg Miller and Lazslo, and I can vouch that I had a number of similar coincidences in that placid place by the bay.

The set of coincidences that still somewhat freak me out happened when, for a few years, I’d do a small tour along the Oregon coast talking about ghost stories. This was usually at Oregon Coast Aquarium and then a spot in Seaside each Halloween season. You know how they sometimes talk about horror movie crews having bad, even dangerous luck? Such as the final sequel to Poltergeist, which didn’t end well in real life. About three out of those four or so years the same situation would hit me right about when it was time to do those talks. I had an engine blow out just before the mini-tour, my back went terribly south and I was in pain one year, and another time I was hit with a horrible stomach illness the morning of a talk in Nehalem and had to cancel last minute.

Spooky - or kooky – but true.

Still, the biggest jaw-droppers were to come for me, like seeing glowing sand and shooting stars like crazy one night in Cannon Beach, all at the same time. Or the mind-blowing science behind the massive lava flows that created this region, the weird historical bits of Seaside and Depoe Bay – and then there were the bars of the coast. I’ve truly seen lots I can’t explain there.

Those are for another late night bonfire chat, however. Truth is stranger than fiction on this shoreline. In the meantime, if you want to see more of these ghostie tales, go to Oregon Coast Beach Connection's front page and use the search term "ghost tales."

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