Mile 188 Report

July 14, 2018
by Joel Keller

Neptune SP, Strawberry Hill Picnic Area
Saturday 3:00 AM
61° F
Calm/Light from the N
Tide Level:
-1.8 ft
Humans / Pets:
Walking / Running:
Playing in surf:
Playing in sand:
Due to the minus tide, many people were taking advantage of the situation to check out the tide-pools as well as hunt for agates along the beach. Among this large group was a fairly sizable contingent (approximately 25) from OSU who were conducting "hundreds of studies" including monitoring the oxygenation and algae of the ocean as well as "relocating sea stars." This group was also replacing several of the "pot scrubbers" that were noted in the last report (please see pictures).
Apparent Violations:
None noted.
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:
The parking lot at Strawberry Hill was fairly full for the entire three hours that we were there. There were only four or five vehicles at the Neptune South parking lot.
Notable Wildlife:
There were the usual species of birds (including one osprey) but what was lacking were the harbor seals who did not make an appearance on the rocks until the tide was coming back in - approximately noon. There were many anemones, mussels, and sea stars observed due to the low tide but what was most unusual were the hundreds of small, green crabs seen scurrying over the rocks and tide-pools on the north end of Strawberry Hill beach.
Dead Birds:
Signs of oil:
None noted.
None noted.
Fish & Invertebrates:
There were the usual crab and mussel shells along the tide line but these did not seem to be more than have been usually spotted.
Small rocks·Kelp or Algae·Shells·Wood pieces
Perhaps what struck us the most was the near absence of debris of any kind seen along the beach - no trash, plastic bottles, micro-pellets, etc. Only one large rope was seen on the rocks along the southern edge of Neptune South Beach.
New Development:
As noted in the previous report, there are no human structures/developments along this stretch of beach.
Natural Changes:
Landslides/major boulder falls
The bluffs above the beach showed evidence of fairly recent but small landslides; there was also some evidence of re-vegetation on these and other, older landslides. The usual seepage and few small (very small by comparison with the previous report) waterfalls were observed.

None taken.


We decided to explore this stretch of beach due to the significant minus tide on July 14th.  Many others apparently had the same idea.  Most people were taking advantage of the conditions to check out the tide-pools and hunt for rocks/agates but there was one sizeable group from OSU which was conducting "hundreds of studies" including monitoring the algae and oxygen level of the ocean as well as "relocating sea stars."  The usual harbor seals were not seen until the tide was coming in (around noon) but what was perhaps strangest about this trip were the hundreds of small green crabs noted on the north end of Strawberry Hill Beach.  Otherwise, there were, as usual, scores of anemones, mussels, birds (including one osprey), and sea stars (I'd heard that the condition of the sea stars was "not good" but I have no experience as to evaluating the health of these creatures).

  • July 14, 2018
  • Green crabs!
    July 14, 2018
  • July 14, 2018
  • OSU students
    July 18, 2018
  • July 14, 2018
Other Mile 188 Reports (48)


January 16, 2023 - GasiorowskiM
There were two mudslides on the north beach, 20-40 yards north of the parking area, that appeared to be recent. And some trees seem to have fallen down from the top of the bluffs overlooking the...


October 17, 2022 - GasiorowskiM
It was a beautiful day at Strawberry Hill.  40-50 seals were lounging on the rocky islands just offshore.  Many gulls and cormorants were there, as well as a few pelicans.  A few seastars were...
July 18, 2022 - GasiorowskiM
Strawberry Hill is a popular destination for beachcombing and tidepooling.  Quite a few people were there during this visit, all well-behaved and maintaining the cleanliness of this beautiful...
March 27, 2022 - GasiorowskiM
It was a beautiful day.  Many people were at Mile 188 enjoying the spring weather, leaving the Strawberry Hill parking lot way over-crowded.  A wedding was held on the bluff below the parking lot! ...
January 16, 2022 - GasiorowskiM
There is considerable erosion of the bluffs overlooking the north and south beaches at this site, potentially threatening the integrity of the parking area and even highway 101.  Paths leading down...


November 30, 2021 - GasiorowskiM
A few people and dogs were walking on the beach, enjoying the beautiful day.  Some may have been fishing.  There is graffiti at some places on the bluffs and a driftwood shelter on the south beach. ...
  • Strawberry Beach, view northward
  • Strawberry Beach and tidepools, view southward
  • seals dozing on rocky island
  • driftwood shelter on south beach
  • graffiti on bluff overlooking south beach
  • trees falling from bluff overlooking north beach
  • eroded trail from lower bluff to south beach
  • large algae bloom on north beach
  • impassable rocks and cliff above north beach
  • garbage in parking area


March 21, 2020 - Bill Watson
This mile of Coast was very busy at the access points on what was to be the first weekend of Spring Break. The hard to get to stretches remained quiet and magnificent, as always. People were for the...


August 2, 2019 - Bill Watson
A beautiful and pleasant day for checking out the year's lowest tide! Having witnessed the sea star wasting epidemic, I am always amazed by the ongoing recovery. I only saw one harbor seal at...


November 29, 2018 - Bill Watson
The amount of small plastic at the water line at the Cummens Creek parking lot was striking, and not evident elsewhere. The amount of sand that has been washed out since my last walk here was...
October 29, 2018 - Joel Keller
Although the tide was relatively low during this excursion, the surf was rough and I was unable to walk/climb to the southern-most sections of Strawberry Hill and Neptune Beaches.  Possibly due to...
August 30, 2018 - Bill Watson
A beautiful, foggy morning. Most of human activity was at Strawberry Hill. Somewhat less at Bob's, and no one at Neptune. Notable summer sand accumulation at Neptune and Strawberry Hill. No unusual...
August 26, 2018 - Volunteer Trainer
Hiking group from around the states and some of our awesome locals including the new adopter for the mile.  Observations:  sea stars are all healthy, many anemones, aggregating and solitary, mussels...
  • Exploring the mussel beds
  • Egregia-feather boa kelp
  • Pacific Rock crab molt
  • Up close and personal exploration of the mussel beds
  • The mussel clump
April 9, 2018 - Joel Keller
This was the first time I was able to monitor Mile 188.  Over three to four hours of climbing cliffs and outcroppings, checking tidepools, and walking on rocks, I realized what a workout this was. ...
  • Seals at Strawberry Hill
  • Plastic trays and dish scrubbers
  • Landslide
  • Cavern-south Neptun Beach


December 5, 2017 - Bill Watson
Awesome surf during this very high tide!
July 22, 2017 - Bill Watson
The number of people enjoying the different segments of mile 188 was larger than usual on this beautiful weekend day.There were about 40 harbor seals at Strawberry. Fortunately visitors were...
June 23, 2017 - DepoeRena
  • Sand crabs dying in large numbers.
  • Sand crabs dying in large numbers
May 10, 2017 - Bill Watson
There was significant run off erosion of the access trails at Strawberry Hill. Worse than in recent years.The sea Stars are coming back. The most were noted at the north end of the Strawberry beach....
March 23, 2017 - FriendofStrawberry
Cloudy, windy cool day. Not much activity. We walked the beach north as far as we could. Tide was still going out. Would have been better an hour or so later. Happy to report hardly any beach trash.
  • Oyster Catcher
  • Harbor Seals
  • Floating Object
  • Floating object closer view


July 10, 2013 - claretucker
Oyster catchers greeting tidepoolers on a gorgeous clear morning. So much sand has come in that many of the usual anemone pools are covered up. But beach walkers can easily walk from the north...
  • One of the several north beach access trails at Strawberry Hill are becoming very deep.


November 8, 2012 - claretucker
Gorgeous fall day and no one there. New and strange to me jelly fish washed up - smaller than my hand, clear with a hard knobby "head" ??? and amanitas watching over the coastline.
  • Strawberry Hill looking north.  Beautiful fall day, amanitas on sandy bluff.
  • clear, whitish jellyfish washed up. Hard knob at one end.  Hand size or smaller
August 31, 2012 - claretucker
Minus tide with the moon setting - gorgeous morning, surprised not to see anyone else around. Lots of sand around my favorite north rock, about 5 ft. in places. Usual tidepool suspects with lots of...
  • Strawberry Wayside north trail to beach
  • Carved bluff at Strawberry Hill wayside
  • Minus tide pool creature. Strawberry Hill August 31.
August 3, 2012 - claretucker
Nice evening at Strawberry. More beach sand is in on north side, so walking is easier. Trail down to beach is getting really eroded. And graffiti is getting worse and worse on cliff. Beach was very...
July 6, 2012 - claretucker
Great tidepooling today. Saw 6 sunflower stars. Back beach was amazing clean; thought I'd find lots of chunks of styrofoam and water bottles.
May 2, 2012 - claretucker
Found a large wooden spool believe to be tsunami debris. Picked up many plastic bottles, small floats, and styrofoam chuncks. Saw a small boat at Rock Creek. If you come to the beach, bring bags...
  • Wooden Spool found at Strawberry Hill.
  • small boat south of Rock Creek


December 16, 2011 - claretucker
The sand is out on north side of wayside - looks like winter is here. 3 crab boats out!
August 20, 2011 - claretucker
Busy, busy beach. Lots of sand deposited in last month.
July 8, 2011 - [email protected]
A whole bunch of sea gooseberries were found around the main access to Nepture on that week. A lot more than I've usually seen. I have reports from Seaside Aquarium that staff spotted them around...
  • Found bunches of them here on this day, more at other places over the next day or two.
May 19, 2011 - claretucker
Beautiful day for a minus tide at Strawberry. Lots of usual anemones, chitons, stars, and mussels available.
April 20, 2011 - claretucker
The sand is "in" on the north side of Strawberry allowing easy beach walking. And Strawberry was "pink" at the minus tide: lots of pink algae, pink crystalline algae, and a beautiful dark red sea...
  • One of many sea slugs found on Oregon coast
  • One of many sea slugs found on Oregon Coast


October 24, 2010 - FriendofStrawberry
First powerful storm of the season. Strawberry Hill with a +8.9 tide and winds 25-30 with gusts to 50 from the South. Waves 25 to 30 feet. How do those critters in our tidepool survive? No Harbor...
August 31, 2010 - [email protected]
Bob Creek, sand, cobbles clean, big stumps and logs on cobbles.Strawberry Hill, Tide pools under water, Seals/Sealions 7/8 in water channels.Bray's Point no visitors, foggy.birds, gulls about 70...
June 14, 2010 - claretucker
Lots of action in the tide pools for the minus 2 tide. Sea lemons laying their circular egg cases were good to see. Lots of plastic to collect on the beaches between Yachats and Florence. Bring a bag...
January 7, 2010 - claretucker
Lots of sand still on the beach north and south. Front of bluff on path to the north beach has fallen into path. Counted 55 seals. The graffiti being carved into our sandstone cliffs is a real...


September 3, 2009 - claretucker
So much sand on the north side. Makes for a great walk even when the tide is coming in. I counted over 36 washed up jellyfish on most northern beach! Never seen that many.
May 10, 2009 - claretucker
Good tide pooling, lots of anemones, stars, several different kind of egg cases - chitons are out!


December 4, 2008 - claretucker
Gorgeous winter day, no wind, sun. Lots of gulls, crows, several cormorants drying out, and three oyster catchers working the low tide. Hardly any plastic debris - yea!
October 23, 2008 - FriendofStrawberry
We only had time for a short stop and I had the chance to tell a new friend (and new Coast Watcher) about the Harbor Seals on the rocks below. We sat on the upper steps for a little protection from...
August 19, 2008 - claretucker
Purple urchins in good shape. Lots of tube worms, too.
May 5, 2008 - FriendofStrawberry
Arrived when low tide was starting to come back up. Harbor Seals are the only seals that rest and enjoy the safety of these off shore rocks (when the tide lets them). Counted at least 2 baby Harbor...
  • For years Strawberry Hill has been a research area not only for Oregon universities but also scientist from other states.  It has been a classroom and a place where the ocean and tidepool critters are monitored and studied.
April 24, 2008 - claretucker
North side - some large trash items at end of beach. Pair of oyster catchers on "island" rock.
March 13, 2008 - claretucker
Pair of oyster catchers south of entry. Not as much trash as expected. Lots of gulls.
February 13, 2008 - claretucker
The rocks are back. Very few birds about. Lots of sand disappeared since January. Surf line is littered with bits of plastic. No new landslides. Spring beach cleanup will be busy.


December 6, 2007 - claretucker
South beach seemed to be untouched by recent big storm. Most of sand is still there.
September 14, 2007 - claretucker
North side and south side like two different beaches. North Side still has lots of sand, clean drift line, lots of sea life showing on rocks.South side has little sand, lots of seaweed, palm, grass...
July 4, 2007 - claretucker
Minus tide revealed 9 nudibranchs.
June 15, 2007 - claretucker
Little more sand in the north. Strange worm like animal with many legs in surf line. Oyster catcher on rock.
March 22, 2007 - claretucker
No changes from last visit.


December 21, 2006 - claretucker
Quiet day at Strawberry, surf seems high. Some sand moving out. Heard Oystercatcher on outer rocks.