Mile 219 Report

December 25, 2015
by malachite

North end of Agate Beach, Yaquina Head south
Friday 1:30 PM
Humans / Pets:
Activity Comments:
Notable Wildlife:
Dead Birds:
Fish & Invertebrates:
New Development:
Natural Changes:

I reached this mile via the Lucky Gap Beach wayside access. As is usual in the past 3 or 4 years, the area just before you reach the stairs to the beach was flooded--usually the flooding lasts about a week after a medium to heavy rain. There are also steps that are rotting in the stairway. The city plans to build another access, further north, although it apparently can't afford to maintain properly the access infrastructure it already has. I hoped for a peaceful walk on the beach and an opportunity to see what changes the storms of the past week or two had made. What I did see is what--unfortunately--has become standard on beaches from miles 216 to 224: uncontrolled dogs chasing after shorebirds, messing with other people's dogs, and of course relieving itself anywhere and the owners not bothering to remove it from the beach. That day, it was a large (about 70 lbs) husky cross w/reddish fur that came charging over to a small group of people w/3 large dogs. The apparent owners, a pair of surfers, simply watched. Their dog (if it was their dog) almost triggered a fight w/one of the other dogs. Eventually, one of the small group's dogs, a young Rottweiler (unleashed, of course) took off after the uncontrolled husky cross, and also ran around the beach for awhile before finally deciding to return to his owner. Naturally, some shore birds got chased--after all, what are they there for but to be used as amusement or practice prey by loose dogs? The surfers continued along their way to the ocean, their dog eventually joined them but was, of course, free to go anywhere. Since February/March of 2015, there have been maybe 5 days, when I've walked on any beach from mile 216 to mile 224, when I haven't seen any out of control dog (1) chasing shorebirds--at least 3 times the dog owners were actively encouraging their dogs to chase/harass shorebirds and other beach walkers have reported seeing owners do that; (2) harassing other people's dogs, sometimes while the owners fruitlessly yelled at their dogs to come, sometimes while their owners appeared too absorbed in their cellphone conversation to know/care what their dog was doing, that includes taking away another dog's ball, jumping onto another dog over & over again, (3) running up to small children, frightening them sufficiently that the small children cry--the owner then walks over and is UNABLE to catch their dog, (4) jumping onto people, and too bad if that person is afraid of dogs--it seems that on miles 216 through 224, someone who's afraid of dogs is just out of luck, as about 50% of dog owners using those beaches apparently assume that everyone just loves their badly trained/mannered "fur babies." Finally, the other day my dog & I were frightened by 2 very large German shepherds in the east side parking lot at Agate Beach wayside. We had walked on the Big Creek path and were returning to my car. As we walked off the path and into the parking lot, a large (estimated 120 lbs) male German Shepherd charged over to my dog and started sniffing her. My dog dropped her ball and stood very still (submissive behavior). Even so, that dog growled at her at least once. I yelled at the dog to go away, it ignored me. It ALSO IGNORED its owner's commands to return to the owner. Eventually, it finished sniffing and went back to its owner. THEN the OTHER 120 lb German Shepherd (also ignoring the owner's calls) ran over. This time I got hear the familiar, "it's ok, she's friendly". Eventually she returned to her owner. We had been around or at least 50' away from those dogs--we weren't close. I felt helpless and angry. The man apologized. So what? He had no right--was behaving most inconsiderately--to let his dogs offlead (I didn't even see a leash in his hands) in a public area unless he was SURE his dogs did a reliable recall or would simply stay near him unless he TOLD THEM IT WAS OK to go further away. It's called BASIC OBEDIENCE TRAINING. The dog I was with? I helped train her--her recall is about 98% solid, far better then 95% of the dogs I see of lead on the beach. And by recall I mean that if she's 100' away on the beach, and I whistle, she'll come straight to me 98% of the time EVEN IF there are other dogs on the beach, etc. From now on, I'll be walking that dog or any dog I'm caring for, with a squeeze bottle of lemon juice in my pocket. I plan to squirt that lemon juice in the face/eyes of ANY DOG that seems to threaten or annoy my dog or me. I don't know if it's ok with the city of Newport, et al, for their beaches to become dog parks without even the rules of most dog parks (no harassment of other dogs, pick up after your dog), but that what's happened. The shorebirds on the beach are nothing but amusement or practice prey for the owners of those dogs. I'm really sick of it. I trained my dog, I helped train other dogs so that they can be let off lead on Oregon's beautiful beaches w/out harassing the wildlife or interfering with anyone else's enjoyment of the beach (i.e., doesn't scare small children, run up to strangers, take other dog's balls/toys, etc)--it's not that hard. If you can't or won't train your dog, fine, your choice--but then don't let it off lead. Don't expect everyone else on the beach, including the shorebirds, to take care of your dog for you and be entertainment or prey for your dog.

Other Mile 219 Reports (37)


September 8, 2021 - YHONA
Fog and low visibility were evident during today's survey. Low number of visitors at both beaches as well.
August 20, 2021 - YHONA
3 dead murres were identified at Cobble Beach. 2 of the remains appeared to be chicks and 1 of them was tagged by COASST. It was relatively calm for a Friday afternoon, as there weren't many visitors...
July 14, 2021 - YHONA
Walked along the wrack line at Quarry Cove and Cobble Beach after low tide exposure concluded. Did not observe anything out of the ordinary at either locations and amount of trash was low compared to...
June 8, 2021 - YHONA
Walked along Quarry Cove and Cobble Beach at Yaquina Head. In addition to seeing live common murres, harbor seals, and cormorants, remains of a dead seal pup and 2 dead murres along with cracked...
April 21, 2021 - YHONA
Walked the length of Quarry Cove beach as well Cobble Beach, and did not observe anything irregular. I observed multiple visitors recreating on the beaches, but few were staying in such spaces for...
March 21, 2021 - YHONA
Walked the Quarry Cove and Cobble Beach stretches of coastline within the park, and observed various park visitors interacting with the resource safely and respectfully. Observed various different...
February 13, 2021 - YHONA
The most important observations were the large but superficial rock slide at Quarry Cove and the relatively high concentrations of jellies and pyrosomes in the wrack line.


April 19, 2020 - YHONA
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the park has been closed to all traffic (vehicle and non-vehicle). Despite this closure, there were 2 non-compliant walkers who were observed walking on paved...


October 6, 2019 - YHONA
There were about 50 people exploring Cobble Beach: playing with children, taking pictures, looking through the wrack and shore line, and a couple surfers closer to Agate Beach. 13 birds along the...
July 5, 2019 - YHONA
February 11, 2019 - YHONA
During the survey there were 8 total people and 1 dog recorded on the beach. Wind speeds were averaging in the mid to high 20's and about half way through this survey we had the onset of rain showers...


September 25, 2018 - YHONA
During the survey there were 105 people and two dogs on the beach. 38 cars, 10 SUVs, 4 Pickups, and 2 RVs were recorded in the parking area at the end of the survey. There was a great deal of algae...
June 15, 2018 - YHONA
We discovered a black oystercatcher nest at the far east side of our beach along the cliff side. Once chick has since hatched.


July 16, 2017 - m219walker
Sunny day, moderate wind from NW. 3 surfers, 12 runner/walkers, 2 playing in sand. Two dead Common Murres. Construction going on for Ernest Block Wayside.


December 25, 2016 - m219walker
Cloudy day after major rain event. Only one couple walking. Sandstone and basalt boulders on beach. Lucky Gap Trail stairs (south end) awash. Nice stairs being built north end of beach.
June 3, 2016 - m219walker
Beautiful sunny day, ~65F with light wind from the NNW. Noon visit at high tide at ~7'. Saw 13 people on the shore/in the water, mostly surfers. The summer sand buildup is in place with only larger...
April 14, 2016 - driscolke
Arrival of ocean seabirds which nest on the rocks at this site is significant; usually seals are evident along with pups; this is a popular site for tidal pools. Usually sighted are eagles and Black...
March 12, 2016 - driscolke
Yaquina Head Lighthouse is always interesting, there is an abundance of marine observation available to the casual observer: tidepools, seabirds, mammals. This day there was hail, thunder, lightning...
February 11, 2016 - m219walker
Winter storms have pushed sizable wood up above the average high tide mark. Flooding has generated additional seeps and overloaded the Agate Beach sewage facility prompting hazard notices on Lucky...
February 2, 2016 - driscolke
A lovely day at Yaquina Lighthouse tidal area. The geologic collection of offshore rocks permitted a wonderful view of the many exciting marine wildlife. Although there were a few 8-10 yr. old sea...


November 21, 2015 - driscolke
This was a gorgeous sunny afternoon at Yaquina Lighthouse tidepool area. Absent and no sign of recovery were sea stars; BLM guides mentioned apparent distress with urchins. Few birds and one seal...
November 5, 2015 - m219walker
 SUMMARYTwo people on beach, one surfing, one enjoying a beer and the scenery. Small patchy wood in drift line. No birds or mammals observed. 'Little Creek' flowing close to bluff.
September 30, 2015 - Volunteer Trainer
Eleanor Siebers called from the BLM Yaquina Head Interpretive Center to report a wood chunk with mussels found yesterday on Cobble Beach of Yaquina Head (30 Sept. 2015) by “Lucia." It is local - NOT...
  • Wood found by LuciaJohn Chapman inspected- appears to be local though has red flags
  • Importance of looking at the underside
  • two bolts on the piece of wood
  • number of small mussels on the piece of wood
June 17, 2015 - m219walker
Mostly sunny afternoon, two family groups plus 3 surfers using beach. No obvious drift line besides a small wooden pallet. Yellow blooms of Potentilla and pink Beach Pea made me observe the beach...
  • Monkey Flower on cliff above Cobble Beach, Yaquina Head17 June 2015
March 22, 2015 - m219walker
Very few people on the beach early Sunday morning: four, two of which came with me, and one sleeper.Wrack contained mostly small pieces of wood, no dead birds, fish, or mammals.Reference: Mile 219 is...
  • 20 jan 2015 sunset taken north Agate beach


December 27, 2014 - m219walker
Day partly sunny, about 2 hrs before high tide, south face of headland inaccessible.  One extended family on beach; two photographers, mostly pics of each other.  Five dead birds, four likely Cassin'...


August 1, 2010 - malachite
Yesterday around 5:30pm I walked down to the beach via the Lucky Gap access. That access places you near the south end of mile 219. When I arrived & later, when I left (about an hour later), a...
  • A fire on the beach was built yesterday evening using a fairly large driftwood stump for firewood.  Twenty four hours later, the people are gone, the stump is still burning.


December 9, 2009 - yaquinalady
This year the depth of the stones on the beach is lower than last year and typical years, by several feet. The big erosion area above the tollbooth looks unchanged.


October 11, 2008 - cindyashy
Pelicans, pelicans, and more pelicans!!! Record numbers of pelicans in fact -- so this report is going to be pelican centric :-) I'm estimating there were 3600 Brown Pelicans roosting on the rocks...
June 13, 2008 - L Taylor
Bright sunny, windy day. Lots of people at the lighthouse. Lots of common murres, pelicans and some nesting oystercatchers. The beach was surprisingly clear of debris just the usual large logs.
March 8, 2008 - cindyashy
Unusual sighting of a Brown Pelican in March. See Wildlife list for more. I'm going to talk with BLM staff to see about get some permanent signage in the tidepool area to prevent people from getting...
March 4, 2008 - L Taylor
Beach appeared very clean- not even much driftwood. The Common Murres are back at Yaquina Head. The Hatfield Marine Science researchers were at Yaquina Head counting returning gray whales and...


December 5, 2007 - cindyashy
2 days after a major coastal storm, I expected to see many dead birds but did not - found one injured American Wigeon. The storm did significant damage to the trees near Quarry Cove and I found...
November 24, 2007 - cindyashy
This was an afternoon minus tide on a holiday weekend so the tidepool critters took center stage at Yaquina Head. The tidepools off Cobble Beach were crawling with visitors - an average of around 65...
November 20, 2007 - L Taylor
There were NO live birds on the beach. No foraging, not even flying overhead. Very quiet. I did see what I believe to be 1 dead Western Grebe (see photo 1) with 2 zip ties on it's right wing, 1 blue...
June 8, 2007 - L Taylor
Lots of wildlife at the lighthouse. Seal pups, common murres, cormorants, black oystercatchers. Only 2 dead birds so decayed couldn't tell what they had been. Pretty normal for such a fine day.
March 13, 2007 - L Taylor
Lots of wildlife action from the Bald Eagle, Common Murres, and Double Crested Cormorant to the resting harbor seals. Quite a good day. I was a little surprised to see so many dead birds and each of...