NEWS YOU CAN USE
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.
It's Fall on the Coast: Summer is Here
Coast Travel: Wading In October’s Warmer Waters
|Saturday: waves at Boiler Bay are so
calm they do little crashing
– It’s still a somewhat unknown secret that right now
is the warmest time of the year on the Oregon coast – a slightly
clandestine nugget that still somehow eludes most visitors to these
beaches, especially those regular travelers from the nearby valley.
Yet here it is now, early
October, and the region is still baking beneath bright skies and
dark blue waters that are calm and a little bit warmer than usual.
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to say just how long this weather phenomenon will last, but the
safe estimates are for at least another week, until the middle of
the month. Even so, in recent years the warmer temps have lasted
well into the latter half of the month. These conditions, including
less wind and lesser clouds, are creating the perfect environment
for finding some last minute joys splashing around the waters of
Plus, with lodging
prices now beginning their nosedive, and less crowds on the beaches,
this year’s “second summer”
is turning into an especially vibrant and memorable one.
Currently (Monday, October
9), it is balmy in Newport’s Nye Beach area, with seamless
blue skies and a pristine, blue and placid ocean. It is almost unreal.
So BeachConnection.net staff urges you to hit the coast in the next
week and partake in some of this unbelievable beauty. Just keep
an eye on the weather reports.
Here is a guide to some
beach highlights that will welcome the traveler with open arms in
two miles of sand stretch from the southern edge of the Necanicum
River to the "Cove" area at the base of Tillamook Head
in Seaside - probably the Northwest's single most popular beach.
Along the way, you'll encounter the Promenade, about a mile worth
of lovely walkway traveling alongside the beach and breakers. There's
the Turnaround, with the statue of Lewis & Clark at its center,
and the copious shops, arcades and restaurants bundled along Broadway,
which begins (or ends) at the Turnaround. There are numerous cute
cottages from the early part of the last century, and the replica
of the salt boiling structure Lewis & Clark used - in the very
spot it originally sat.
the beach, it's an enormous expanse of soft sand, with the occasional
pile of driftwood waiting for the would-be bonfire-maker and a bit
of playground equipment here and there.
The closer you
are to the town center, the more populated the beach. Wander closer
to the rocky, cobblestone-strewn stretches of the Cove area to the
south - or the bulky dunes of the estuary to the north - and you'll
find less and less human beings. At the north end, and along the
beaches of Gearhart, you’ll also find more sand dollars than
anywhere else on the coast, thanks to a variety of environmental
conditions that come together and leave tons of whole ones littering
the beaches, sometimes in the thousands.
exactly halfway between Waldport and Yachats, you'll find this funky
little Forest Service campground that's been a longtime favorite
of those in the know. It's a well-maintained gem, where nine miles
of sand in either direction is the big attraction.
There' are 59 sites,
full amenities, RV spots and even a small amphitheater that comes
complete with an electrical system and a large outdoor movie screen
- all of which helps make this one of the coolest campgrounds in
are some interesting secret beach accesses about a mile south of
here. About MP 161 (approximately a mile south of Tillicum) you'll
find streets named after states. Look for Oregon St., turn west
and you'll find a hidden beach access in between some homes. It's
still fluffy sand around here.
Take care when
parking as not to disturb the residents.
lies close by, just a mile south. Around MP 162 - just kitty-corner
from Brubacker St. - there's a patch of gravel on the west side
of 101 and a small wooded trail wandering off to the beach. Here,
it's a little less than a mile to the basalt-covered world of Yachats'
beaches. But near this clandestine beach access, you'll also find
some large, colorful boulders and a little hidden cove in the cliffs.
Cool off in the waters
of one of the more magical beaches on all of Oregon's coast - in
front of a tiny town that's like one big hidden secret, laying just
west of Tillamook.
There's but a handful
of businesses here: an espresso shop, two restaurants, and a smattering
of motels and rentals. Most of the buildings are nestled up on the
steep hill overlooking the ocean, looking a bit like Astoria or
a primitive San Francisco.
pristine beach features miles of sand to the south, until you hit
one end of Netarts Bay. Capping the northern end of town is the
imposing Maxwell Point - and the Three Arch Rocks just offshore.
But that's not the end of Oceanside. Indeed, there's a tunnel built
here in the early part of the century which still survives, letting
you visit the other side. This secretive strand contains a myriad
of surprises, like coves, caves and giant rocky slabs and small
sea stacks in odd shapes. It all looks somewhat like something out
of the old "Star Trek" series.
and Secret Sights Near Manzanita
a few files north of Manzanita, you'll find Oswald West State Park.
But somewhere between that town and the state park, it's impossible
to miss the striking vistas of Short Sand Beach and the cliffs that
form half of this crescent-shaped cove. You can’t dive into
these waters by any means, but this area is a fantastic sight and
a memorable, even esoteric experience.
Pull over on one of the
gravel parking spots off the side of the road, and there's the one-mile-plus
hiking trail heading down to Short Sand. Walk down this trail a
bit, veer to the left - instead of going down to Short Sand - and
you'll encounter a totally different set of inclines and cliffs.
basalt structures form the various headlands here, with craggy shapes
jutting up from the ocean and bundling together. In one area, the
sea boils and tumbles against a hidden cove, with black, jagged
spires forming something akin to a creepy, post-apocalyptic cathedral
(sort of reminiscent of the "Planet of the Apes" films).
Another spot visible from these dangerous cliffs showcases more
of the jagged shapes, this time with enormous holes and arches in
them. Through these, you can see other headlands to the north. Be
extremely careful here, however.
here are sudden and deadly. In fact, it was near here where a famed
creator of the show “COPS” died about two years ago,
after he fell from a cliff while hiking these bluffs.