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Video: Seven Fantastic Details Along 130 Miles of Oregon Coastline

Published 02/22/2020 at 5:28 AM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Video: Seven Fantastic Details Along 130 Miles of Oregon Coastline

(Oregon Coast) – From Cannon Beach down to Yachats, it’s roughly 130 miles of rugged, sometimes crazed coastline. Along that unrelentingly gorgeous stretch there’s hundreds if not thousands of amazing finds to be made. So as a wacky little editorial exercise, we decided to take one of our scenic sampler videos and pull seven unusual facts out of it – seven places with unheralded details to make your next trip an inquisitive and extra rewarding one.

Seal Rock. Large, bulbous basalt structures dot this rugged, craggy landscape, and these behemoths are stunning all on their own. Yet winter’s low sand levels reveal even stranger bedrock beneath what you see in summer, showing off some of the cracks of what were once – millions of years ago – part of a faultline.

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Other fab finds: agate hunting can be plentiful at this magnificent beach. Especially if bedrock is showing.

Arch Cape. The tiny village just south of Cannon Beach has that main access you see here in the video, but a fair amount of hidden ones lie just north of that. You have to take some time to explore the funky little gravel backroads farther up 101. At this southern end, however, even though it’s much more well known, there’s still usually hardly anyone there, leaving the beach mostly to you.

Insider’s Tip: at night (if it’s safe, of course), this is a great spot to go looking for the glowing sand phenomena (caused by bioluminescent phytoplankton) as there’s absolutely no lights on the beach. Late summer and September are probably best for this, plus the beach is usually well expanded by summer’s high sand levels.

Arch Cape at night

Manzanita (at top). The northern edges of this Oregon coast almost-hot spot can be some of the most magical parts. Quirky little rock structures lurk in the sand up here as you get closer to the looming presence of Neahkahnie Mountain, including the one that looks like someone’s plumber’s butt. This video clip shows the little stream that provides other scenic distractions, alongside a mist that occasionally gathers at the edge of this beach and then gets lit up by sunset.

Rockaway Beach. That giant structure called Twin Rocks just calls to you, doesn’t it? If you want to find a spot closest to it, head southward to Minnehaha St. and the access there brings you almost face to face (seen in the video clip). But you’ll find a strange little sight: that giant arch so famous on the Oregon coast has disappeared. The rocky blobs have changed shape. It’s the point of the view, actually. From this angle, you simply can’t see it. For a wackier incarnation of this favorite sight, head to the very northern end of Rockaway Beach. There it drastically changes shape and looks squished – but the arch is visible again.

Yachats. Few places on the entire Oregon coast have the constant wave drama Yachats has, with those rocky shelves creating barriers to the raucous waves and causing a never-ending stream of watery pyrotechnics. Even in calmer conditions to the place acts like it’s stormy. There are plenty of safe places to watch all this a ways away: don’t go near the where the water is pounding. It’s not nearly as safe as you might think.

Thiel Creek. Just south of Newport lies this engaging hidden spot, found only by an unmarked gravel patch by the side of the road with a path darting off into a thick forest. Here, sandstone cliff walls provide plenty of color and the beach walk can go for miles in either direction and you still won’t see another soul. During winter, if sand levels get low enough, you may spot the oddities in the video: ancient ghost forest stumps some 4,000 years old. They’re lying around at odd angles, and look a bit weathered and tortured in their old age.

Newport’s Nye Beach at Jump-Off Joe. At the end of NW 11th street sits this battered and shrinking promontory, with outstanding views of Yaquina Head and Nye Beach all around. There are bizarre ruins here from an old foundation, part of a real estate venture that failed spectacularly in the ‘80s. The chunk of sandstone sticking out from this spot gets noticeably shorter every year: even 10 years there was a lot more of it. Until the early ‘90s it had a magnificent arch that crumbled one winter.

Interestingly enough, look at those three numbs of rock at the tideline in the video. Those are the remnants of the original Jump-Off Joe, a famous structure on the beach that was much loved, but crumbled completely by the 1930s. After that, this newer feature acquired the name Jump-Off Joe, and it too will be largely gone in 20 years. Oregon Coast Hotels in this area - Where to eat - Maps - Virtual Tours

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