High Surf Warning – Central Oregon Coast

Oh Goodie Goodie Goodie!

It’s not just watching the big waves, its hearing them crash!  I tried to get a video, mostly for the audio. 🙂  When I replayed the video, though, all I could hear is the wind.

  As I’ve spent a lot of time walking the beach, I’ve gotten used to the sound of the waves.  You can hear a low, constant, rumble of the large waves furthest out.  The ones that are closer in have a higher pitch and you can hear the individual waves crash.  There is also a higher pitch sound, that the small waves make, that are washing up on the sand.  It is mostly from the water drawing back and rippling against itself.  Then, at random, you hear a silence of these higher-pitched wave sounds.  That’s when you need to pay attention because, if you are too close, you’re gonna get wet!  hahaha  I think that’s why they are called “sneaker” waves.  It’s all fun and games on a wide, sandy, beach like Tillicum.  But it is deadly if the only place to run is on rocks/boulders.  They are uneven and slippery just when you need your footing the most!

Bull Kelp or Bull Whip Kelp
Bull Kelp or Bull Whip Kelp

I saw this pile of something in the distance so I had to go investigate; even though there is an icy wind blowing.  The seagull is finding something to eat in this ball of Bull Kelp (nicknamed Bull Whip for its shape).  It has an air-filled ball on one end that makes it float.  I imagine a storm will churn a group together so they get knotted. Then the surf will push them onto the beach.

Seagulls Feasting on Barnacles
Seagulls Feasting on Barnacles

There are tiny barnacles on this fairly new log.  (I know it is fairly new because there is still bark on it.)  The seagulls will clean it off quickly.  This is looking north from Tillicum Beach.

I’m not sure what a normal surf is but the swell is predicted to be 22′, peaking this evening.  The tide is going out now and the high at 6:20pm is only a 5.1.  But I’ll have to make time to find a good place to watch the waves before sunset.


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