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Two Kinds of Mysteries: Bayocean Ghost Town, Hiking N. Oregon Coast Historic Landmarks

Published 12/21/23 at 5:35 p.m.
y Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Talks Look at Bayocean Ghost Town, Hiking N. Oregon Coast Historic Landmarks

(Seaside, Oregon) – [UPDATES] - There are definite mysteries in this region's past, and always more to discover.

Two fascinating deep dives into Oregon coast history happen in the coming four weeks, as both Seaside and Nehalem present looks into the area's bygone days. (Above: Bayocean in its heyday)

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On December 28, Seaside's History & Hops program takes a hike – a historic one, that is.

That day will feature local author Stan Pine talking about his newly-published book, Hiking Historic North Clatsop County Oregon. Pine's book identifies over 85 hikes, walks and strolls within north Clatsop County including many items of historical information about the area.

“The variety of hikes, walks and strolls allow readers of all physical ability levels to pick the best outing for themselves,” said event organizers. “The book describes a range of county trails from long distance, heart thumping trails to mild strolls around county parks. Included will be well-known and little-known historical tidbits.”

Pine is steeped in north Oregon coast history, volunteering at both the Columbia River Maritime Museum and the Clatsop County Heritage Museum. You can also find other books of his about the Jefferson County region of Oregon, digging into historical hiking there and historical backroad drives.

Lewis & Clark Saltworks in Seaside is one major historical marker on the north coast.

The talk happens at Seaside Brewing Co. (851 Broadway) and is free. It begins at 6 p.m.

For further information, contact Emily Halverson during museum hours at 503-738-7065, or send an email to

Then on January 20, North County Recreation District (NCRD) in Nehalem goes deep into the mesmerizing story of Bayocean, the little Tillamook County resort that had a big start, only to fade away into a ghost of a ghost town. There's nothing left of it that's clearly part of the old village.

At 3:30 p.m., NCRD hosts Jerry Sutherland, Portland historian and author of Bayocean: Atlantis of Oregon. It takes place at 36155 9th Street, Nehalem. Cost is $10 to attend.

Bayocean was an unusual and curious bit of Oregon coast history, located on the Bayocean Spit by Tillamook Bay. Not long after essentially failing by the '30s, it was swept into the sea by violent storms, with some dramatic photos showing the ocean engulfing buildings.

Bayocean Park wound up a fierce competitor with Seaside when it started in 1907, offering tourists something quite different. Among its amenities were simultaneous views of Tillamook Bay and the Pacific Ocean from a one-hundred-foot-high ridgeline, a choice of hotels, tents, and cottages to stay in, restaurants, dance and amusement halls, and a massive natatorium with a wave-generating machine.

Miles of roads crisscrossed the peninsula, and some 59 homes were built along them. For years afterwards, some still went to visit, even as erosion was evermore quickly eating up the grand little beach spot.

Sutherland is currently the foremost expert on the subject of Bayocean, a place with a story that many find irresistible.

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Andre' GW Hagestedt is editor, owner and primary photographer / videographer of Oregon Coast Beach Connection, an online publication that sees over 1 million pageviews per month. He is also author of several books about the coast.

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