Oregon Coast Beach Connection - lodging, dining, news, events and more oregon coast beach connection news

Covering 160 miles of Oregon coast travel: Seaside, Cannon Beach, Manzanita, Nehalem, Wheeler, Rockaway, Garibaldi, Tillamook, Oceanside, Pacific City, Lincoln City, Depoe Bay, Newport, Wadport, Yachats & Florence.

Summer Cometh: Are you ready?

Weekend Full of Good and Bad Surprises on Oregon Coast

Nye Beach in Newport was bustling Saturday

(Oregon Coast) – Oregon’s coast is still swarming with tourists and refugees of the valley heat, in spite of temperatures cooling considerably on Saturday. The result is a mess of traffic up and down the entire length of Highway 101 and no rooms to be found. Although some interesting natural wonders are occurring, including a rare fish washing onshore and glowing phytoplankton seen on the beaches.

Traffic jam on 101 in Newport

In Newport, Saturday and Friday saw loads of traffic, with many locals saying it was difficult to get around, although traffic was substantially less after 8 p.m.

Saturday, local beach expert and fire department volunteer Guy DiTorrice responded to at least one traffic accident. “That was our fourth call today,” DiTorrice said on Saturday afternoon. However, more emergency vehicle sirens were heard going north on 101 after that conversation with BeachConnection.net.

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“When you get the normal influx of people that you get in summer, plus the heat in the valley chasing everyone out here, there’s a lot of traffic,” he said.

One fender-bender happened near NE 40th in Newport around 4 p.m., causing traffic to be backed up quite a ways for about ten minutes. It then moved forward at an incredibly slow pace in the northbound lane, as motorists were allowed to eek past the accident scene.

Brian Hines, in Manzanita, had heard about several traffic problems, including a guest at his motel – the San Dune Inn - who said Highway 26 was extremely backed up in places.

Cannon Beach was one big serious traffic mess, said Fultano’s Pizza owner David Johnson. “There’s not only no motel rooms but no parking spots,” he said.

All this means officials are stressing extreme caution while heading to and from the coast, especially with the serious mass exodus that is expected on Sunday as beachgoers return to their homes.

Cannon Beach is a mess, say locals

On Sunday, more rooms are opening up, although many lodgings on the coast are still reporting being completely full that night.

Businesses in Newport are already reporting a record business year, and this long spell of heat is only adding to it.

Glowing phytoplankton were spotted at these cliffs at Nye Beach

As if there weren’t already enough reasons to come to the coast this weekend, glowing phytoplankton is making itself seen on the beaches at night. Visitors in Newport have seen the phenomenon, which is visible as tiny, faint bluish sparks in wet sand or pools of water that have been standing some time. They are created when you move your foot along the sand, kick the sand or pound your foot in the sand or in those pools of water.

This sighting – unusual for the Oregon coast, but more common in warmer waters of the world – is created by dinoflagellates, a form of phytoplankton which is bioluminescent, not unlike fireflies.

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BeachConnection.net’s editor Andre’ Hagestedt spotted it on the beach at Don Davis Memorial Park in Newport Friday night. “I screamed with delight,” he said. “I never get tired of it. I showed it to this girl with us, and she kept squealing, ‘I’ve lived here all my life and never seen this.’ “

This sighting was also unusual because they were more prominent on wet sand all the way up at the bottom of the cliff, which meant the high tide had to make it all the way to the cliffs, even with summer’s calmer waters.

Guy DiTorrice said that isn’t that unusual, however, since some high tides in the summer are around eight feet, which would mean getting up that high.

“It’s the right time of year for it,” DiTorrice said, speaking of the glowing phytoplankton, nicknamed “glowing sands.”

BeachConnection.net has not yet found reports of this occurring in other places north or south of Newport, but Hagestedt said it usually means you can find it on other beaches if you see it on one beach.

Pair of men jokingly asking for money in Newport

Other oddities were also seen in Newport, such as a man – possibly a transient – standing at a street corner and pretending to hold a sign asking for money. Hagestedt snapped a picture of the man, who was laughing and enjoying his joke. But it was unclear if he was truly asking for money or not.

There was another strange find not too far from Seaside this weekend. Keith Chandler and Tiffany Boothe, of the Seaside Aquarium, got a tip about an unusual fish having washed up at Sunset Beach, just south of Astoria.

Freaky fish on north coast

Boothe and Chandler went to the beach and discovered a very rare find: a fish called King-of-the-Salmon (Trachipterus altivelis), which normally lives around 1600 feet under the sea.

“He belongs to the family of Ribbonfish,” Boothe said. “There are four other species of Ribbonfish along our coast, but the King-of-the-Salmon is the largest; growing up to and possibly exceeding six feet. This one measured almost exactly 6 feet. They can be found down as far as 1600 feet from Alaska to Baja and along the Coast of Chile.”

Chandler said this was the first time he’d ever seen this in his 27 years of marine science career. He said he did not know what conditions could’ve brought the creature up this far above its normal environment.

“The name, King-of-the-Salmon, originated from an Indian legend which describes this fish as the 'king' who leads the salmon back to the rivers to spawn,” Boothe said. “They are rarely seen, but fisherman have been known to catch them both in nets and on line (though it is not too common). The adults eat squid and juvenile rockfish.”

The fish is currently frozen at the Seaside Aquarium.


Oregon Coastal Village Wows with Mystic Vibe, Ghost Forest Neskowin is different in many ways, including its geologic features

Outdoor Fish Market Starts On N. Oregon Coast Pacific Oyster hosts the market throughout the summer

Ghostly Tourism on Oregon’s Coast Hunting tales of ghosts is another fun pasttime on the coast

Hiking It and Roughing It on Oregon’s Coast A look at trails and rugged campgrounds

Some Oregon Spots Are Hidden; Some Have Secrets A tour of unusual details from Manzanita to Florence

Geologic Wonders of Oregon Beaches Make Freaky History Lesson Beneath the sands and deep inside the cliffs, there's more to the coast



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In Awe of AstoriaASTORIA
Where the Columbia meets the Pacific, Land of Lewis & Clark and loads of atmosphere & history
Serenity in SeasideSEASIDE
The Promenade, Tillamook Head, family fun & broad, sandy beaches
Cavort in Cannon BeachCANNON BEACH
A mysterious lighthouse, upscale yet earthy, a huge monolith, fine eateries & an art mecca
Annihilating  Beauty of Nehalem BayNEHALEM BAY
Manzanita's beaches, Nehalem and Wheeler's quirky beauty; laid back Rockaway
Time Trip Around Tillamook BayTILLAMOOK BAY
Garibaldi, Barview, Bay City, Tillamook & an oceanfront ghost town
Triple the Pleasure in 3 CapesTHREE CAPES LOOP
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
Divine Depoe BayDEPOE BAY
A spouting horn downtown, freaky hidden cliffs and whales, whales, whales
Nature in NewportNEWPORT
Time-tripping Nye Beach, a bustling bayfront, marine science-central and two lighthouses
Staggering Seal RockWALDPORT / SEAL ROCK
Pristine, even secretive sands and wild geologic landmarks
Aargh, there's no alliteration with Yachats - but it IS unbelievableYACHATS
Constantly dramatic wave action, a mix of the rugged & upscale
Unsurpassable Upper LaneUPPER LANE COUNTY
25 miles of deserted beaches & oodles of wonders
Fine Times in FlorenceFLORENCE
A lighthouse, ancient bayfront and miles and miles of fluffy dunes







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