Stay Eat Events Weather Beaches

Many Faces of Bandon's Face Rock on Southern Oregon Coast

Published 05/18/22 at 7:55 PM PST

Many Faces of Bandon's Face Rock on Southern Oregon Coast

Latest Coastal Lodging News Alerts
In Seaside:
Includes exclusive listings; some specials in winter
In Cannon Beach:
Includes rentals not listed anywhere else
In Manzanita, Wheeler, Rockaway Beach:
Some specials for winter
In Pacific City, Oceanside:
Some specials for winter
In Lincoln City:
Some specials for winter
In Depoe Bay, Gleneden Beach:
Some specials for winter
In Newport:
Look for some specials
In Waldport
Some specials for winter
In Yachats, Florence
Some specials for winter
Southern Oregon Coast Hotels / Lodgings
Reedsport to Brookings, places to stay; winter deals

(Bandon, Oregon) – It's hard to unsee that face once you see it. Just about any visit to the south Oregon coast town of Bandon will result in that wild, almost unsettling sight: there's a giant rock out there that looks like a massive human. (All photos courtesy Manuela Durson - see Manuela Durson Fine Arts for more)

Granted, you have to be at the right angle. While that's a pretty wide range, there is a point where walking too far north or south will result in you not seeing the face any longer.

In any case, it's a she – and she is known as Face Rock. She's a favorite model of one Bandon resident, photographer and drone pilot Manuela Durson. Durson has produced a myriad of unforgettable images of the striking feature. Face Rock is a timeless landmark on the Oregon coast, and Durson's magnificent use of colors and catching the sunset at just the right moments has added much to the legacy of the offshore near-deity.

Face Rock may not have always been called that. There is considerable evidence it had other names periodically over the last century or so since Europeans started piling in. One name that seems to have come up in some material passed on to Oregon Coast Beach Connection from the Bandon Historical Society Museum is Father Abraham, though the article from 1907 doesn't make it clear which rock that is. According to the article, all those rocks at Bandon Beach had names other than what they have now.

According to many retellings of the native legend, Ewauna was the name given to it by local tribes, all based on a story that a princess had been turned to stone in that spot. Ewauna and her story may or may not be the original telling, and even then there are likely other versions of it that were passed down over generations.

Volunteers at the Bandon Historical Society Museum caution that this idea of an official version of Ewauna and Face Rock may not be possible. Tribal storytellers would've had differing versions of how Face Rock's Ewauana drama played out, and white settlers added their own spice to the tale as well.

“It's useful to remember that our concern with finding the 'official' version of a story is a byproduct of a very modern, print-era, point of view,” Jim Proehl of the museum told Oregon Coast Beach Connection.

Which is why historical conclusions become useless and pointless here. The point is the beauty of the rock itself, and Durson catches this without fail and always with a fresh viewpoint on the ancient sentinel as well.

One minute there's a Maxfield Parrish vibe to the clouds, and another it turns out Face Rock is photogenic even in cloudy weather.

Sometimes she's purple, sometimes she's a bright orange. Sometimes she's posing at sunset; sometimes sunrise.

Yet no matter what, Face Rock is still facing upwards towards the sky, as if looking, waiting for something.

For an interesting jolt of Oregon coast geology, see the origin story of Face Rock.

- South Coast Hotels - Where to eat - Maps - Virtual Tours



More About Oregon Coast hotels, lodging.....

More About Oregon Coast Restaurants, Dining.....

Coastal Spotlight

LATEST Related Oregon Coast Articles

N. Oregon Coast's Hug Point Has Its Ancient, Millions-of-Years-Old Secrets
Just a few short miles of Cannon Beach you'll bump into Hug Point. Geology, marine sciences, history

Sci-Fi Connections to Oregon Coast Includes Star Trek, LOST, Stargate, 65
A varied and surprising list from Brookings to Astoria. Sciences

Leech Lane Access and Beyond the Arch at N. Oregon Coast's Arch Cape
Near Cannon Beach there's the arch, remnants of other arches and danger

Southern Resident Orcas Off Oregon Coast Designated as Endangered Under State...
Only 76 of this type of killer whale left in the region. Marine sciences

Dune Novels, Movies Began with Frank Herbert's Visit to Oregon Coast Dunes, F...
Dune: Part Two has roots in Frank Herbert's research in the National Dunes Rec Area

N. Oregon Coast's UnWined Event is Tasty Preview to Astoria's Crab, Seafood a...
UnWined takes place on March 16 at Astoria's Liberty Theater. Astoria events

Quiet Yet Hot Little U.S. Travel Destination: Rockaway Beach on N. Oregon Coast
Now, it's still seven miles of captivating beaches, often full of solitude

What Not to Do on Oregon Coast: Small Beaches During Big Tides, Video
Just about every year it happens somewhere along Oregon's coast. Weather, beach safety

Back to Oregon Coast

Contact Advertise on
All Content, unless otherwise attributed, copyright Unauthorized use or publication is not permitted