Mile 161 Report

February 6, 2018
by dpavlis

Oregon Dunes NRA just north of Siltcoos River
Tuesday 10:00 AM
46° F
Calm/Light from the NW
Tide Level:
2.0 ft
Humans / Pets:
Walking / Running:
Playing in surf:
Playing in sand:
1 - using a drone; 1 - riding a "one-wheel" in the parking area while wife/partner walked on beach.
Apparent Violations:
None; There was a low amount of litter and plastic along the beach, but lots of small plastic and plastic water/juice bottle tops up along Siltcoos River. We picked up and removed 5 plastic water bottles. There was a large plastic trash can on the beach that was too heavy (with wet sand) for us to remove. We dragged it up off the tide line and the location was reported to USFS to have their beach patrol vehicle remove it.
Cars/Trucks parking:
ATVs/OHVs parking:
RVs/Buses parking:
RVs/Buses parking: 0
Cars/Trucks on beach, allowed:
ATVs/OHVs on beach, allowed:
Cars/Trucks on beach, prohibited:
ATVs/OHVs on beach, prohibited:
Activity Comments:
When we arrived, there were no people at the area. When we left, there were people on the beach, along the river and in the parking area. No activities of concern. We noted that vehicles on the beach (none while we were there, but we saw tire tracks) had remained in the designated area for riders (turning around at the boundary and not going outside of the designated area). Some dogs were on leash and others were off. Off-leash does were not harassing birds and appeared to be under voice control.
Notable Wildlife:
1 Raven; 2 Killdeer along river; flock of approx. 50 gulls at mouth of river. Possible feral cat tracks near parking area wetland. Photos and location will be sent to USFS via email.
Dead Birds:
Signs of oil:
Fish & Invertebrates:
Small rocks·Shells·Animal casings (e.g. crab, shrimp molt)·Wood pieces·Land-based debris (picnics, etc.)
Picked up a five water bottles and there was a plastic trash can (moved off tide line and reported to USFS for pick up). Most notable was the lack of plastic (even micro plastic) along the driftline (both the upper and lower driftlines). There was noticeable micro plastic and plastic water bottle lids in the drift line up by the river, tho.
New Development:
Natural Changes:
Noticed that a large amount of driftwood had washed up and much of it had collected where a tributary goes under the road (where it then empties from a wetland into the Siltcoos River).

As mentioned, notified USFS to pick up the plastic trash can that we were unable to haul away. Notification was made via email along with the location of the item in relation to identifiable markers. We took photos of possible feral cat tracks near the wetland (near parking area) and will email to the USFS biologist to alert them.


It was a beautiful winter day, with sun and gentle breezes from the northwest. 46 degrees when we arrived and an empty beach for the first hour. People began arriving around 11:00. It was 59 degrees when we left shortly after Noon with visitors enjoying the day beachcombing and dog-walking, among a few other activities as noted in the report.  

  • Empty beach upon our arrival at 10 AM.
    Empty beach upon our arrival at 10 AM.
    Entrance to Siltcoos beach, looking north.
    February 6, 2018
  • Trash can found on beach
    Trash can found on beach
    Trash can found on beach. We moved from here (away from driftline) and USFS notified to pick up.
    February 6, 2018
  • Driftwood piled up in tributary.
    Driftwood piled up in tributary.
    Driftwood piled up in tributary (roadway just above this).
    February 6, 2018
  • Closeup of accumulated driftwood
    Closeup of accumulated driftwood.
    Closeup of accumulated driftwood.
    February 6, 2018
  • Worm trails in a log in the river.
    Worm trails in a log in the river.
    Closeup of worm trails in a log in the river.
    February 6, 2018
  • Possible feral cat tracks.
    Possible feral cat tracks near wetland.
    Possible feral cat tracks near wetland. Photos and precise location reported to USFS biologist.
    February 6, 2018
Other Mile 161 Reports (28)


April 9, 2019 - dpavlis
It was a stormy, wet and windy morning at Siltcoos Recreation Area today with dramatic clouds and storms coming and going. All visitors appeared to abide by rules to remain on wet sand in plover area...
  • Siltcoos River outflow looking south
  • Siltcoos River outflow looking south
  • Reflections looking north
  • Baby Valella washed ashore
  • Entrance to beach at Siltcoos
  • Stormy day beachcomber


July 3, 2018 - dpavlis
It was a beautiful morning on Siltcoos Beach. No noticeable changes since our report in February except for the appearance of roped off plover nesting areas...a large area to the south of the access...
  • Float on Siltcoos Beach
  • Low tide on Siltcoos Beach
  • Notable amounts of crab remains
  • Expanse of shells
  • ATV on beach
  • Beautiful morning on Siltcoos Beach
  • Crab molt on Siltcoos Beach
  • Off-leash dog on Siltcoos Beach


September 20, 2015 - YmnKai
January 7, 2015 - JCarpenter
Nice day on the beach, I picked up small plastic debris in the area.


December 18, 2013 - mjohnson
This beach is a very lightly used part of the coast. In season the parking area is mainly used as a staging area for ATV activity, (not allowed on mile 161) ATV's go north from the parking lot on a...
September 19, 2013 - mjohnson
Spoke with a group of eight people visiting from New York, who were traveling through Washington and Oregon.They were really enjoying see the Oregon coast.
March 11, 2013 - mjohnson
Tidal over topping of the play area at Siltcoos Creek mouth. Large Dune at the southern end of the fore dune was eroded quite a long way to the north, leaving a tall bluff approx. 18 to 20 ft. high.


September 16, 2012 - mjohnson
No sign of any Tsunami debris.
July 11, 2012 - JCarpenter
Put styrofoam disk in trash bin.
June 8, 2012 - mjohnson
The fore-dune has eroded into 6-8ft. high bluff and river mouth has migrated at least 100 yards to the north. Because of this low minus tide today I observed thousands and thousands of what appeared...
March 9, 2012 - mjohnson
Recent windstorms have covered the parking lot and access road with sand to a depth of 1"-2". Beach shows a moderate amount of erosion approaching the base of the fore dunes.Only a few harbor seals...


December 9, 2011 - mjohnson
Seen hundreds of gulls at the river mouth. Nice day for a beach walk.
October 19, 2011 - JCarpenter
There was one ballast container placed by trash bin. Otherwise the beach was clean.
September 17, 2011 - mjohnson
Clean gentle sloping beach, shows very little scouring away of sand, even slope all the way to base of foredunes.
June 20, 2011 - JCarpenter
Saw a group of sea/river otters north of Siltcoos River outlet and off the shoreline, about 15 playful.
June 15, 2011 - mjohnson
Snowy Plover exclusion areas are roped off. A volunteer stated that she knows of two nests currently. Approx. thirty-five harbor seals sunning on north side of Siltcoos river outlet.
March 6, 2011 - mjohnson
Beach clean not much visible driftwwd, small quantities fo bull kelp.No Wildlife viible other than a few ducks in Silkcoos Creek area.Nothing remarkable to note, just a pleaant day at the beach after...


March 17, 2010 - mjohnson
Beach clean.


December 18, 2009 - mjohnson
Literally hundreds of seagulls clustered on both sides of Siltcoos Creek mouth.
September 18, 2009 - mjohnson
Beach is clean, free of trash except near the access path area.
June 25, 2009 - dpavlis
The Western Snowy Plovers are nesting this time of year (March 15 thru Sept 15). Areas are roped off, but people have been ignoring ropes and walking through areas, putting nests and chicks at risk (...
January 8, 2009 - dpavlis
Today the beach was windy and rainy, but beautiful with scattered sun breaks and big bold clouds from white to black. There were only 7 people on the beach (none stayed long, except one). I can't...
  • The Siltcoos River as it meanders out to sea along Siltcoos Beach.


December 4, 2008 - mjohnson
Beach and River mouth area appeared to be swept clean by normal wave action to a gentle slope up to foredunes. Seagulls at river mouth were the only animal life observed other than two harbor seals...
September 18, 2008 - dpavlis
Ocean unusually calm/quiet. 7 of the 11 dogs we saw were in a group of rescued greyhounds. All dogs on beach were either leashed or under good voice control and not disturbing wildlife. Beach was...
  • A group of harbor seals gathered at the mouth of Siltcoos Creek (this photo shows some of the 16 we saw).
March 11, 2008 - mjohnson
Creek at south end fo mile 163 no longer runs to the ocean, has stopped flowing earlier than in past years.Beach has been swept clean of debris and most driftwood by wave action, also the beach shows...


June 4, 2007 - bwholler
Beach sand and foredune returning to a more gentle summer pattern. Update on nesting snowy plovers from plover volunteer present in parking lot: There are 5 nests enclosed in predator-proof cages on...
February 20, 2007 - bwholler
Cindy Burns, (wildlife biologist and snowy plover protector), told me that the bulldozing of sand and beach grass on both the north and south sides of Siltcoos River is maintenance of snowy plover...


December 7, 2006 - bwholler
Driftline with much kelp and wood. Kelp is starting to break down and disperse. Large masses of kelp deposited on beach during November’s big storms. Siltcoos River is still far to the south of the...