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Rare Oregon Coast Snow Dazzles Tourists, Locals


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, Wadport, Yachats & Florence.


Secrets of the Season

Rare Oregon Coast Snow Dazzles Tourists, Locals

Cannon Beach (photo by Tiffany Boothe)

(Oregon Coast) – “Snow is a four-letter word,” said Seaside’s Mike Exinger, after at least two inches hit the northern half of the Oregon coast Thursday.

From Newport to Astoria, things got a bit icy and white, creating some havoc on Highway 101 and closing schools, but mostly leaving everyone with a sense of awe or glee. Some were cross-country skiing on the beaches or hilly streets, others were snowboarding or riding around on ATV’s. Many enjoyed a day off from school, at least as many complained about the cold – but mostly people were amazed.

“As a former Midwesterner, this ain’t nothing,’ “ said Exinger. “But unlike previous snowfalls, this one is still here. I just shoveled my walk; I’m on the shady side of the street so there was little melting. Took all of five minutes. Big deal.”

Exinger, who owns Zinger’s Homemade Ice Cream, is a little unhappy about the white stuff, however. He’s been on vacation since December and will reopen his ice cream parlor this weekend. “We reopen tomorrow, with temps in the 30’s,” Exinger said. “What joy. Reminder: that’s why they call it hot fudge.”


THE TIDES BY THE SEA, Seaside. 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. 2316 Beach Drive. 800-548-2846. www.thetidesbythesea.com.

Cannon Beach (photo by Tiffany Boothe)

Donna Weiss, owner of Weiss’ Paradise Suites in Seaside, awoke to quite a white surprise around 4 a.m. “I thought I was dreaming - more snow than I ever expected,” Weiss said. “Seaside is still fairly cold but the main streets are almost clear. It is starting to ice up and it will be very slick tonight until it warms up tomorrow. I am staying inside by the fire tonight.”

"Wheeler is gorgeous," said Wheeler resident Ken Thompson, who snapped this picture

Numerous accidents were reported up and down the coastal highway, especially in Clatsop County. There, traffic was around five mph for most of the morning, with icy roads or thick layers of snow causing problems from Newport to Gearhart.

Tiffany Boothe, of the Seaside Aquarium, was caught in that traffic between Cannon Beach and Seaside, and found the going scary. She managed to snap many spectacular photos for BeachConnection.net, however.

“We had a foot of snow here this morning,” exclaimed Corinna Otto, manager of Spindrift Inn, in Manzanita. “People were cross-country skiing on the beach and boogie boarding down Laneda Avenue. We still have a lot on the ground, it's melted off the trees and the roads are getting slushy.”

Seaside Aquarium (photo by Tiffany Boothe)

“Normally it’s one to three inches and melts the next day,” said Brian Hines, owner of San Dune Inn in Manzanita. “For the first time had to shovel our sidewalk and have snow piled in the parking lot.”

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.

Hines also saw someone skiing down Manzanita’s main road. Exinger caught sight of some kids snowboarding on the dunes of Seaside.

Roy and Danielle Emerick were surprised by all the snow in their hometown of Newport. The pair runs Starfish Point there, but had a friend from Seattle staying with them who reported seeing flurries of big flakes in the wee hours of the morning.

“We had about one to two inches and mostly everything was covered in a blanket of snow,” Roy Emerick said. “The trees all had snow covered branches and it was like a winter wonderland. Yaquina Head point was covered with snow and all the driftwood was covered as well.”

Cannon Beach (photo by Tiffany Boothe)

“Our friend from Seattle was very disappointed when she heard it was going to snow there. It seems like every time she leaves the Seattle area they get snow, and she does not get to see it. So, now she got to experience seeing snow in Newport.”

At Trollers Lodge in Depoe Bay, owner Peg Leoni also had guests at the motel from out of state. “Our guests with children really loved it,” she said. “They are from California and don't see it often.”

Tradewinds Motel, Rockaway Beach. All rooms at the Tradewinds Motel are immaculate and have TV’s, VCR’s and in-room phones with data ports. The oceanfronts all have a queen bed, a double hide-a-bed, kitchen, cozy firelog fireplace and a private deck. Some oceanfront units come with all those amenities but the kitchens. Both types sleep up to four people. Others are appointed with a queen bed, small fridge, and coffee maker – sizable for a two-person romantic getaway, yet still perfect for those on a budget. There is an elaborate oceanfront Jacuzzi suite that has two bedrooms, coming with a kitchen, double hide-a-bed, fireplace and private deck, sleeping as many as six. For those wanting bigger accommodations for family reunions or large gatherings such as weddings, some rooms can connect to create two-room and three-room suites. Some rooms are pet friendly.523 N. Pacific St., Rockaway Beach. (503) 355-2112 - 1-800-824-0938. www.tradewinds-motel.com

Just south of Newport, Stonecrest Cellar B&B was surround by snow. Owner Judy Joubert said she’d been in the hot tub for a while in the morning and enjoyed the ocean view below, with the bed and breakfast’s lawn covered in powder. The roadway into the lodging, which faces 101, looked more like a mountain cabin scene than Oregon’s coastline.

“There were lots of spinouts on Highway 20,” Joubert noted, after riding that road for a while.

Depoe Bay (photo by Peg Leoni)

Dogs and nature took the center stage much of the time. In Seaside, Boothe said a yearling seal was resting on the snow-covered beach.

In Newport, the Emericks took their Jack Russell Terrier - named Niles - out to run around on the beach. “He ran all around and even made doggy snow angels,” said Emerick. “He would run for a while and the stop, then lay on his back and move around. It was hilarious.”

Leoni’s wiry black lab, Samantha, wasn’t totally captivated, but the snow did have its benefits for finding the energetic dog. “Samantha found it wet, cold and uninteresting, but she was easier to find.”

Yachats had no snow, but Yachats Wine Trader/Yachats River House manager Marsii Charron saw plenty of interesting moments nearby.

oregon coast lighthouses on dvd

Stonecrest Cellar B&B (photo Judy Joubert)

“I have heard that it snowed north and south of us,” Charron said. “I hiked up Cape Pepetua this morning and there is about two inches of snow on the top of the cape, but nothing until three quarters of the way up. Seeing the cape covered in snow with the waves crashing below was inspiring.

“In town, there is no snow but the mountains surrounding us are beautifully dusted on the tops. Actually, today has turned out to be one of the sunniest days we have had in a long time. It's warmed up here: the sun is shinning, the waves are calm, there have been people playing on the beach all day. For this time of year, we couldn't have asked for a better day.”

More photos of Oregon Coast Snow

Front of Stonecrest (photo Joubert)
Snowy Seaside neighborhood


D Sands Condominium Motel, Lincoln City. Getting a free, fresh baked cookie upon check-in is just the beginning. Every room is beachfront, and it's all right up against Lincoln City's most famous stretch of beach, next to the D River. Each room, comes as a suite or mini-suite, and has a kitchen and balcony or patio. Some have gas fireplaces, while all have a DVD Players with movies available for renting (and movie rentals come with free popcorn). There's a heated indoor pool, a spa, and this fabulous beach is lit at night. Rooms sleep anywhere from two, four to six - including a deluxe fireplace suite. Gift certificates are available, and they offer special occasion packages as well. To make a reservation and see a virtual tour of the rooms, visit our website at www.dsandsmotel.com. 171 S.W. Highway 101. 800-527-3925.


Lincoln City Vacation Homes There’s something for everyone among this selection of wondrous homes: smaller homes with a view to a large house that sleeps 15. All the homes are either oceanfront or just a few steps away from the sand – 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, depending on the home: 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 are allowed in some homes – ask ahead. Each comes with complete kitchens so you’ll have a home away from home. Most have the seventh night free. Prices range from winter $85 to summer $230 per night. www.getaway2thecoast.com. 541-994-8778.


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 our entire property for 20-26. All units 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. Enjoy comfy robes & slippers, luxury bath amenities, quality linens and more. See us on The Travel Channel's "Great Escapes" show in August 2006. 741 S. Downing St., Seaside. 800-738-6691. www.SeasideSuites.com



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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


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

Inn At Spanish Head, Lincoln City. It's 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. Enjoy dining in the penthouse restaurant and bar - whether you’re in the mood for a casual meal or a candlelight dinner. They offer an array of seafood specialties, juicy steaks and other Northwest favorites, including a decadent Sunday buffet. Rooms range from bedrooms to studios to one-bedroom suites with microwaves and refrigerators to full kitchens. Hotel amenities include wi-fi, spa, saunas, exercise room and a year-round heated swimming pool. Kids will love the game room and easy beach access. Full-service conference and meeting rooms for that inspirational retreat; extensive, gorgeous wedding possibilities. Near the south end of Lincoln City at 4009 SW Highway 101. 1-800-452-8127 or 541-996-2161. www.spanishhead.com