Mile 136 Dispatch

June 18, 2009
by Foggy

Location:
Coos
Oregon Dunes NRA, west of Saunders Lake
Conditions:
Thursday 3:30 PM
Sunny
65° F
Wind:
Calm/Light from the NW
Tide Level:
4.0 ft
Humans / Pets:
People:
25
Activities:
ATV riding
Concerns:
Disturbances:
Vehicles:
ATVs/OHVs on beach, allowed:
25
Activity Comments:
Notable Wildlife:
Dead Birds:
Stranded:
Fish & Invertebrates:
Driftline:
Kelp or Algae·Animal casings (e.g. crab, shrimp molt)·Shells
New Development:
Modifications:
Natural Changes:
Comments:
Summary:
Mile 136 is the heart of ATV country, with quads and dune buggies constantly crawling the nearby dunes over "sand roads" and myriad tracks through the pines. To be honest, it's actually the perfect place for this activity, and most drivers were sticking fairy closely to the established routes. I accessed the beach via about 1.5 miles of the well-marked Saunders Sand Road and returned via the 2-mile Hauser Sand Road, a long slog on loose sand. The beach was covered with ATV tracks, but almost no litter. As you would expect, there wasn't much in the way of wildlife. Shells, animal casings and kelp/algae in the driftline. Moderate human impact (25)-riding ATV's in allowed area. Sand accumlating on the beach as a large ridge and runnel.
  • Typical scene on Mile 136. Groups of ATV riders enjoying the sunshine. Steep beach.
    Typical scene on Mile 136. Groups of ATV riders enjoying the sunshine. Steep beach.
    June 18, 2009
  • A section of Mile 136 is protected from the heaviest surf by an offshore sandbar, resulting in a lagoon with crystal-clear water and minimal waves. These lagoons are favorite fishing areas for harbor seals.
    A section of Mile 136 is protected from the heaviest surf by an offshore sandbar, resulting in a lagoon with crystal-clear water and minimal waves. These lagoons are favorite fishing areas for harbor seals.
    June 18, 2009
  • A section of the beach had a distinct long ridge of sand, with a low deflation plain behind it. This is called a "ridge and runnel". This graphic shows the approximate profile of the beach up to the vegetated foredune.
    A section of the beach had a distinct long ridge of sand, with a low deflation plain behind it. This is called a "ridge and runnel". This graphic shows the approximate profile of the beach up to the vegetated foredune.
    June 18, 2009
  • In places, the ATV tracks were so pervasive that they completely covered the beach all the way from the foredune down to the waves.
    In places, the ATV tracks were so pervasive that they completely covered the beach all the way from the foredune down to the waves.
    June 18, 2009
  • This is a typical view of the primary access to the south end of Mile 135, the Hauser Sand Road. It leads over the dunes and through incredibly dense shore pines, salal, and willows.
    This is a typical view of the primary access to the south end of Mile 135, the Hauser Sand Road. It leads over the dunes and through incredibly dense shore pines, salal, and willows.
    June 18, 2009
  • Hauser Sand Road passes Beale Lake on its way to Mile 135.
    Hauser Sand Road passes Beale Lake on its way to Mile 135.
    June 18, 2009