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Striking Moments in Time on Oregon Coast: Wowing to Unusual

Published 04/05/21 at 6:55 PM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Striking Moments in Time on Oregon Coast: Wowing to Unusual

(Oregon Coast) – There’s never a dull moment on Oregon’s coastline, but some are more “amaze-balls” than others. Right place, right time: that is the key. And if you have your camera in tow, you’ve got a chance at some striking documentation – maybe even of the jaw-dropping variety. (Photo courtesy Oregon's Adventure Coast / Steven Michael Photography)

Here’s a few examples of some unusual captures.

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The Oregon coast can create the strangest weather systems, probably because this is where the inland and the oceanic air systems collide. Sometime in spring 2002, this scene presented itself just east of Pacific City. A crazy, angry bank of clouds was moving in from the east, while the coastal sunset hit it with wild colors and tainted it in pinks and reds. Rain was beginning to fall, and lightning could be seen in the distance. For a brief time, this collection of conditions created a rainbow in the midst of this almost sepia-toned moment.

Its blues and greens were largely cut out by the fierce cast of the reds from behind, but it was still visible: a strange and surreal reminder of how dynamic and unique the coastal environment is.

Down the road, in Neskowin, the lightning was directly overhead, and created the most thunderous, cataclysmic noise imaginable. Hotels in Pacific City - Where to eat - Pacific City Maps and Virtual Tours

Lighthouse In a Bubble

In the early 2000’s, Cape Meares Lighthouse went under the knife for a few months of renovations and refurbishing. Few things were more startling than to walk up to this beauty and find it all covered up in a white bubble – reminiscent of those scenes in the movie “E.T” when the government covered up the family’s house in a kind of quarantine.

There were some years in the ‘70s and ‘80s when the Cape Meares Lighthouse was not open to the public and not really run by anyone. During those years, it was hit by a sizable amount of vandalism, including all four of the prism lenses being stolen. They were eventually recovered over a span of several years in the mid-80s, including one being recovered in a drug raid in Portland. One was anonymously left on the doorstep of a park official as well.

Early in 2010, the park was again hit by vandals who fired several rounds into the structure, breaking 15 panes and chunks of the Fresnel lens. Eventually two suspects were arrested in the crime. Damage was estimated at around half a million dollars. Hotels in Oceanside - Where to eat - Oceanside Maps and Virtual Tours

Monsters at Shore Acres. On the south Oregon coast, one place where striking moments continually pop up is the Coos Bay area’s Shore Acres State Park. Luckily for visitors, there are numerous such photo opps, as the complex and varied outcropping doesn’t need extra big wave events to put on a show. Perhaps slightly rough-than-usual surf conditions hit the “on” switch here. (Photo courtesy Oregon's Adventure Coast / Steven Michael Photography)

Most know about the awe-inspiring place, but few know that in big winter wave conditions these monsters can tower as high as 300 feet. Many are between 100 and 200 feet high. See why Shore Acres has big waves.

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Double Rainbow Amid Storm Ravaged Beach

In 2009, Seaside Aquarium’s Tiffany Boothe explored a winter beach after a storm and found many a wonder, including this rather surreal moment where a double rainbow appeared and framed one of the more tangible beach finds. She noted the large surf along the coast had distributed a hefty amount of marine grasses and kelp along the sands. Entangled among the grass and the holdfasts (a root-like structure that attaches kelp to hard surfaces) were decorator crabs, cancer crabs, juvenile red rock crabs, porcelain crabs, and small hermit crabs.

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