Mile 192 Report

December 31, 2018
by [email protected]

Location:
Lincoln
Cape Perpetua north
Conditions:
Monday 2:00 PM
Sunny
Wind:
Calm/Light from the SW
Tide Level:
2.9 ft
Humans / Pets:
People:
1
Activities:
Walking / Running:
1
Exploring the rocks.
Concerns:
Disturbances:
Shorebirds moving in response to humans/dogs
Vehicles:
Activity Comments:
Very little of my mile is accessible to people.
Notable Wildlife:
I haven't been seeing many seals these days, but there are about 16 sunning themselves on the Cleft of the Rock seagull colony.
Dead Birds:
Total:
1
Species/names:
Definitely a brown pelican. Looks like its been dead awhile.
Stranded:
Total:
0
Fish & Invertebrates:
Driftline:
Shells·Animal casings (e.g. crab, shrimp molt)·Wood pieces·Ocean-based debris (from fishing boats, ship trash, etc.)
After the last King Tide, I've noticed large tree stumps that weren't there before. I'm also seeing 4 new floats. 3 while and one light blue, along with some netting. No markings on the floats. There was also some debris that the OSU researchers left on the Cleft of the Rock seagull colony. They put large wooden markers on the rocks in the summer so they could view the colony with a drone. Instead of picking up the debris, they just left it there. The last big windstorm broke it apart and tossed it up on the rocks. That's just what I can see. Who knows where the rest of the garbage went. Bad form OSU researchers! Bad form.
New Development:
Modifications:
Natural Changes:
Landslides/major boulder falls·Major cracks appearing in bluffs·Evidence of wave overtopping
This last King Tide came higher than any other I had seen. I posted pictures on the King Tide website and will post some here. Not only did it bring in a lot more large stumps, but the water was actually hitting embankment it hadn't in the 2 years I've lived on this mile. My house views North Cape Perpetua, and even in my short tenure here, I can see cracks in the bluff and landslides around Hwy 101. The embankment on the south side of Amanda Creek (south of my house about 50 feet) has a large crack in it. I'll take a picture and post it on a Dispatch.
Comments:

I only have control on the embankment directly in front of my property.  I've been planting grass seed to slow the erosion on my bluff.  It's been surprisingly effective.  I now have a large area that was all dirt and rocks on the west side of the property covered in grass.  Its only about the first 20 feet of my 50ft embankment down to basalt rock, but it's better than it was.  

Summary:

Since much of my mile is rocky with steep embankments, I can't really get down to view it from eye level.  As such, the most significant things I notice are a lot more large stumps and more debris.  My house looks at the Cleft of the Rock seagull/harbor seal colony so I observe the birds and seals there every day.  I have two big observations this year.  The biggest change I've seen in my two years, is the number of sea stars that have come back to the rocks.  When I first moved here in 2016, looking at the rocks/island around me, I counted 6 orange and 1 purple sea star.  Now I can count 36 orange and 3 purple sea stars.  It could be I was just missing them before, but they are very pronounced now.  The one really sad thing is the Black Oystercatcher pair that live on the rocks on the west side of my house.  They sucessfully mated and had two chicks that grew to maturity in 2017.  They mated and had two eggs and two chicks this year, but they didn't even last a month.  I don't know exactly what happened, but there were a particularly agressive pair of eagles this year that came to the seagull colony every day and decimated the eggs, and then the young chicks.  In previous years the seagulls were able to run the eagles off.  This year the eagles pretty much did what they wanted.  They would come in the morning and evening and spend 30 mins on the colony jumping from nest to nest eating the eggs or chasing the chicks.  We had three seals die on the colony this year (2 babies, 1 adult), and one washed up on the rocks nearest to my house (where the Oystercatchers live).  I counted 5 eagles (3 adults, 2 juvenile) munching on the dead seal.  They were about 40ft from the baby Oystercatchers.  Two days later, the chicks were gone.  In 2017, the adults where so agressive, not even seagulls landed on their rocks.  In 2018, they didn't seem to care, even when the eggs had hatched.  Both parents would fly off and leave the chicks unattended.  They even left the eggs unattended.  Very strange behavior.  

  • North Cape Perpetua area, looking north during low tide.
    North Cape Perpetua area, looking north at low tide during King Tides.
    1251 Hwy 101 S, Yachats, OR
    December 21, 2018
  • North Cape Perpetua looking north at high tide
    North Cape Perpetua area looking norht at high tide during King Tides
    1251 Hwy 101 S, Yachats OR
    December 21, 2018
  • North Cape Perpetua area looking west low tide
    North Cape Perpetua area looking west at low tide
    1251 Hwy 101 S, Yachats, OR
    December 20, 2018
  • North Cape Perpetua area looking west high tide
    North Cape Perpetua area looking west at high tide, King Tides
    1251 Hwy 101 S, Yachats, OR
    December 20, 2018
  • Windy Way, Yachats High Tide
    End of Windy Way, Yachats, High Tide, King Tide
    The west end of WIndy Way in Yachats, facing southeast.
    December 21, 2018
  • Windy Way, Yachats OR, South
    West end of Windy Way, Yachats, looking south, high tide, King Tide
    West end of Windy Way, Yachats, OR
    December 21, 2018
Other Mile 192 Reports (11)

2017

November 10, 2017 - [email protected]
I can't get down to the water on much of my mile but I will try as soon as I get a dry day.  Most of these observations are from cliffs above the water.  Suprised by how much large wood and tree...
  • Calm day at gull colony
  • Next day at the gull colony

2010

February 21, 2010 - mcrobbins
Despite warmer than normal temperatures since December, the main sign of the coming change of seasons was the widespread growth of bright green algae around pools and runoff areas on all the rocky...

2009

August 29, 2009 - mcrobbins
The weekend was mild, but foggy and damp from the recent rain, and mile 192 was deserted except for a couple enjoying a walk on the rocks and a man walking two small dogs. There was quite a bit of...
June 15, 2009 - mcrobbins
The day was sunny and warm, with a light breeze, and only a few other people were out exploring. The tide was low, giving us opportunity to explore the edges of the rocky shore. Much sand has...
March 13, 2009 - mcrobbins
Spring is not very much in evidence on mile 192, although there are subtle signs of change. There is plentiful new algal growth in and around areas of seepage and runoff in the rocky areas,...

2008

September 21, 2008 - mcrobbins
Despite the mild weekend weather, we did not see much human activity during our walk, except at the beach access directly off Yachats Ocean Road. There was a house being remodelled at the north end...
June 8, 2008 - mcrobbins
The day was sunny, though cool and breezy. We saw 10 people walking on the rocks and sand close to public access points. There are many signs of the recent rainfall. Creeks and runoffs are quite full...
March 2, 2008 - mcrobbins
We observed no significant erosion or changes due to winter weather or human activity, hardly surprising considering the rocky nature of the shoreline on this mile. As happened last year there was...

2007

September 18, 2007 - mcrobbins
Like our last mile observation, today was uneventful. There were a few people taking in ocean views at Yachats Ocean Road, but elsewhere there was little evidence of human activity. The rental house...
June 18, 2007 - mcrobbins
This mile observation was pretty uneventful and there was little to observe other than normal seasonal changes. We noted no new development along the mile. There was quite a lot of new driftwood at...
March 11, 2007 - mcrobbins
We noticed remarkably little evidence of damage or erosion from winter storms. There was minor slumping of some bluff edges at the south end of mile 192, but nothing major or significant. There was a...