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Secrets of the Season

Rare Whale Sighting on North Oregon Coast

Humpback photos by Tiffany Boothe

(Seaside, Oregon) – Evoking shades of the fourth “Star Trek” movie – the one about the Humpback whales – a pair of Humpbacks were seen Monday very close to shore in Seaside, on the north Oregon coast.

The pair of whales were photographed by Seaside Aquarium’s Tiffany Boothe on Monday, in the “cove” area, at the very southern end of Seaside. Aquarium manager Keith Chandler said it’s rather unusual to spot this type of whale so close to shore – a rarity that’s made more interesting because of current tidal conditions. It's something both tourists and locals can be excited about.

“What’s also unusual here is that the ocean is so calm right now,” Chandler said. “There are hardly any breakers, and it’s just beautiful out here right now. During the summer or fall, when it’s calm like this, it’s not uncommon to see whales close to shore.”

Close up of Humpback whale

Chandler said to see Gray whales this close to shore, or in the cove area of Seaside, is not unusual at all. These kinds of conditions not only make it much easier to spot the mammals, but it sometimes coaxes them in closer to the shore. But Humpbacks don’t usually come in this close in these waters, making the Seaside sighting kind of rare.

“I had a friend who was out on the rocks last week, and the whales were so close he could literally smell their breath when they blew out their blowhole,” Chandler said.

Cove area of Seaside

There were some Grays and Humpbacks spotted at the jetties at Warrenton this week, Chandler said. “When people see Humpbacks, they are often mistaken for Gray whales,” he said.

During the fall, when temperatures on the coast are at their warmest of the entire year and winds are generally the most calm, Chandler said you will see more whales. “Not because there are more whales at that time of year, but because the sea conditions are at their calmest and it’s easier to spot them.”

Humpback whales can get as large as 50 feet. They are currently in migration from south to north.


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Sumptuous indoor pool heated year round. Lovely ocean views come with many rooms. All units big, extremely comfortable, w/ special touches. Each room contains a microwave, refrigerator, in-room coffee makers, cable TV, and larger kitchen units are available as well. Free parking, choice of smoking or non-smoking rooms. Within walking distance to all of Yachats’ various amenities; short walk to the beaches



STARFISH POINT is located on the Central Oregon Coast - in Newport - and offers only the finest in luxury condominium lodging. At Starfish Point, every unit is focused on the beauty of the sea and the beach.
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