Crazed Weather Patterns and Other Oregon Coast Travel Tips
(Manzanita, Oregon) – The passes to and from the southern Oregon coast may get some snow, lightning strikes two weeks ago caused some lingering annoyances on the north coast, and there are a few things to look out for if you’re traveling around the north coast.
This coming weekend and early next week, snow levels could descend to around 1000 feet in Oregon, bringing some amount of snow to the coast range and even to places like the west hills of Portland. Much of the coast range - even the passes for highways between the coast and places like Salem, Portland and Eugene – are around 1,000 feet high, with the summits anywhere between 1800 feet and 2300 feet. That means higher elevations may see some snow during this weekend, although it’s not expected to be a traffic stopper at this time.
The National Weather Services has issued a special weather statement for the coast range passes in southern Oregon, near cities like Roseburg, Ashland or Medford.
“This is a favorable set up for snow levels to lower below pass level, perhaps down to 2,000 feet west of the Cascades as the storm moves into Oregon Saturday night and into Sunday,” the NWS said. “Right now it is still too early to tell exactly how much snow will occur and just how low snow levels will get, but people planning to travel along Interstate 5 and the passes through the Cascades this weekend should prepare for wintry weather.”
Meanwhile, a series of heavy lightning strikes near the end of October in northern Tillamook County created an interesting set of lingering problems for some businesses. Over 100 lightning strikes were recorded in an area that included Manzanita, Nehalem, Wheeler and Rockaway a few days before the Halloween weekend, with many strikes hitting telephone poles and even the local water tower.
The resulting surges burnt out the credit card machines for some Manzanita businesses, including the Big Wave Café. Its sister business, the North Coast Garlic Company, still has its credit card machine, so diners carrying only cards are asked to walk across the parking lot to pay there.
Big Wave Café workers reported finding the machine fried out the following morning, and several objects next to it actually burned a bit.
The San Dune Inn reports its cable connection was blown out because of a lightning strike, disrupting all TV service to the motel’s rooms. That was repaired rather quickly, said owner Brian Hines, as cable TV repairmen were in town en masse the next day because of the storm.
Those staying at the WorldMark Resort in Seaside – indeed anyone wandering through Seaside – will notice what looks like a building in a giant bubble. The resort is undergoing various renovations on the outside and inside, in various stages. It’s a rather imposing structure and hard to miss from anywhere around town.
According to the resort’s website: “Seaside Resort will be undergoing significant exterior building renovations, beginning this fall, which will impact the entire resort. This renovation project will require sections of the resort building to be closed in phases and may limit access to some resort amenities.”
In the good news category – certainly for Manzanita locals – what is known as “Lake Manzanita” is gone. The huge body of water that often collects behind the town’s post office (and sometimes referred to as “Lake Post Office”) will be no more. A sizable construction project recently tore up the parking lot and installed a filtration system that works in conjunction with the drainage system, keeping automotive oils and other substances from clogging the drain.
A moody sunset Monday night in Seaside
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