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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

The Oregon Coast, Cobble Beach, and the Tidepools

Friday night we made it to the condo in Otter Rock after a long drive across Oregon.  It was nice to roll in and know that we wouldn't be doing any more serious drives for a while.  Saturday morning, we woke up before everyone else and took a walk down on the cliffs overlooking the ocean.  THE OCEAN!  It had been over 10 years since I'd been to the ocean, the last time in California.  The Oregon Coast was new and exciting.  It is beautiful! 
I loved looking at the sharp rugged drop off from the land to water, sometimes with a small ribbon of sand between the two, other locations just having the white froth of waves pounding endlessly into the rocks. 
Down below we saw several seals relaxing on rocks out of the water.  It's amazing how awkward they look on land (I think they look like fat little sausages), but how graceful they are once they're back in the water. 
A bald eagle was nearby, possibly on the lookout for a seal pup he could capture for breakfast. 

After breakast of our own, we went to Yaquina Head to visit the lighthouse, Cobble Beach, and the tidepools. 
Cobble Beach is amazing.   It's a solid stretch of smooth dark rocks with no sand to be seen.  The cobbles were formed from hot basaltic lava hitting the ocean, exploding, then being worn down into smooth stones.  We were lucky enough to be there at low tide so we could go explore the tide pools, but I've heard that high tide is pretty cool too.  You couldn't see the tidepools then, but the as the waves crash into the cobbles, it sounds pretty neat. 
The Yaquina Lighthouse was pretty neat from Cobble Beach.  I liked this picture of a seagull and the lighthouse.
 The tide pools were really fun to explore too.  Large reefs of mussels clung to the rocks. 
 Anemones were plentiful in the lower pools.  If you touched them, the tentacles would cling to your finger a little bit. 
Another pool was full of purple sea urchins.  They were very spiny and we touched them carefully.  We also petted a few starfish. 
 Another shot of the lighthouse.  Very photogenic! 
We actually spent quite a bit of time at the transition between the cobbles and the tidepools finding and catching small crabs.  A volunteer said there are 8 different kinds of crabs in the tidepools, but we just had fun catching them.  Most of them looked like the one above. 
 This crab looked like a body builder because of his large claws. 
Some small (hermit?) crabs lived in small spiral shells.  They had blue edges to their claws.  Nobody got pinched, but it sure was fun trying to find the biggest crabs. Some liked trying to find the baby crabs.  The bigger ones were the fastest and smartest- they've learned they have to be that way to survive.  We really liked it here!

Nearest City: Newport, OR
Location: N° W°
Time Needed: Lots!
Difficulty: Easy-Moderate
Kid Friendly: Yes
Additional Info:  $7/vehicle to get in

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful pictures! I love the Oregon coast! Lucky ducks!