Mile 179 Report

November 29, 2022
by ThomasK

Heceta Head Lighthouse, Devils Elbow SP, Cape Creek
Tuesday 2:00 PM
48° F
Moderate from the S
Tide Level:
6.0 ft
Humans / Pets:
Walking / Running:
During the summer sand is deposited on the beach by the gentle waves. The winter waves will pull so much of the sand back out and expose the rounded river rock. 8 cars were parked in the parking lot. People walked up the trail, total of 20 people stopped by the gift shop next to the Heceta Keepers House as they continued walking up to the lighthouse. One dead seagull up high in the driftwood. Two people braved the wind and chance of rain to fish in the surf....see photo
Activity Comments:
Notable Wildlife:
Dead Birds:
Seagull of some type
Fish & Invertebrates:
Wood pieces
New Development:
Natural Changes:

It was a cold, windy, day with chance of rain at any moment. Not many people ventured out to watch the ocean or walk up the trail past the Heceta Assistant Keepers dueplex (now a B&B and interpretive center), past the gift shop, and up to the lighthouse. Beach still covered with sand and not much debris on the wrack line. Two people fishing in the surf. One dead gull. 

  • Beach and parking lot at Heceta Head State Scenic Viewpoint
    Photo taken from Cape Cove Room in the second story of the Heceta Keepers House. The house is not only a fine Bed & Breakfast but also an interpretive center focusing on the keepers who once tended the lighthouse. Beautiful Cape Creek Bridge completed in 1932 and designed by noted bridge engineer Conde McCullough.
    November 29, 2022
  • Cape Creek Bridge and creek that drains into the ocean.
    On the beach looking south east towards the Cape Creek Bridge.
    November 29, 2022
  • One dead seagull. Lighthouse and Assistant Keepers House in the distance. Sand still covers most of the beach as the waves pull the sand off the beach and expose the round river rocks.
    Heceta Lighthouse beach. Note dead bird in foreground.
    November 29, 2022
  • Only 2 people on the beach and they were surf fishing. Not a perfect weather day to walk on the beach. Cold, windy, and chance of rain at any moment.
    Heceta Lighthouse beach
    November 29, 2022
Other Mile 179 Reports (9)


December 27, 2022 - ThomasK
The parking lot was closed due to King Tide debris washing up onto the parking lot and possbility of sneaker waves. Strong gusty wind kept most visitors off the parking lot area. A few ventured out...
November 9, 2022 - ThomasK
A quick trip to check the Heceta Lighthouse Beach.  2 dead gulls oberved.  What looked to be the remains of a seal or sea lion with a large ball of wire inside.  Strange rocks were all over the beach...
  • Heceta Lighthouse Beach


June 29, 2009 - oystercatcher
It was a beautiful clear morning. The tide was the lowest I have observed with exposed sand almost out the rocks where the nesting birds were. The Elder Hostel tour was busy photographing...
  • Low tide looking out to the rocks off Heceta Head.
  • Gulls, cormorants and murres on the rocks.
  • A pair of oyster catchers were observed off the point on the right side of the photo.
  • View of the sand to the rocks from Cape Creek
April 10, 2009 - FriendofStrawberry
Immature Gray Whale reported dead on Carl G. Washburne State Park beach just north of Heceta Head Lighthouse Thursday night. Scientists took samples at that time. When we were there Friday morning...
March 9, 2009 - oystercatcher
The 40 foot long juvenile male fin whale which was washed up on Sunday the 8th was being buried in an 11 foot deep trench by a local Florence excavating company. Emanating from the carcass was an...
  • Dead Fin Whale on Heceta Lighthouse beach
  • Closer look at dead Fin Whale from Cape Creek Bridge
  • Showing  whale's blood left after it was moved to the burial site located further to the south end of beach below parking lot.
  • Park ranger throwing lime on the fin whale while it is being buried.
  • Covering the fin whale body with sand
  • Observers of the whale burial.
March 8, 2009 - FriendofStrawberry
Juvenile, 40-foot-long male Fin Whale washed up on beach at Heceta Head.A deep water juvenile male Fin Whale washed up on the beach at Heceta Head Lighthouse. On Friday it was seen at the mouth of...
  • Open mouth - Top baleen visible and tongue on lower jaw.
  • Open mouth.  Visible where mammal research samples were taken earlier in the day.


August 28, 2008 - oystercatcher
It was a sunny calm morning with no one in the parking lot when I arrived. A fog bank sat just off shore beyond the breakers. The beach sand appears to have started moving off shore revealing loads...
  • fog bank off shore on a sunny calm day
  • Cobbles being revealed as the sand has started washing out to sea.
  • Pelican resting with seagulls on Heceta Head rocks.
  • Footprints in the early morning sand may be those of a coyote making an early morning visit to the beach.
  • Postelsia
  • unidentified dead bird showing head and beak
  • unidentified dead bird foot
August 3, 2008 - oystercatcher
It was a beautiful calm morning with only one car from Montana with a couple photographing tide pools which they had never seen before. Most of the rocky beach found in spring was now covered with...
  • green anemone in tide pool
  • large rocks at North end of beach at low tide
  • snails on rock
  • Cormorants and Gulls on  rocks off Heceta Head
April 13, 2008 - oystercatcher
It was a pleasant day for beach goers, alternating sun and overcast with moderate wind. Lots of cars coming and going from the parking lot. People tide pooling, climbing on the rocks, beachcombing...
  • View of Heceta Head, the lighthouse, lighthouse  keepers residence (bed and breakfast), beach  and Devils Elbow.
  • Juvenile mussels with noticeable patches of missing barnacles.
  • Rocks at low tide with seaweed or algae growth.
  • sea stars and anemones
  • beach at low tide near water line looking north to caves which are below the bluff