Mile 289 Report

September 22, 2014
by ollikainen

Kincheloe Point, South Jetty Tillamook River
Monday 3:00 PM
65° F
Calm/Light from the S
Tide Level:
4.0 ft
Humans / Pets:
Walking / Running:
Apparent Violations:
Cars/Trucks parking:
Cars/Trucks on beach, prohibited:
Activity Comments:
2 groups of horses on spit, but not on Mile 289 at time of observation.
Notable Wildlife:
Just a few gulls, a pelican, and a cormorant
Dead Birds:
6 common murres2 rhinoceros auklets1 immature gull
Fish & Invertebrates:
Kelp or Algae·Animal casings (e.g. crab, shrimp molt)·Shells
mostly sea grass (eel grass), very little other stuff today
New Development:
Natural Changes:
lots of new sand
It was a very pleasant fall equinox on Mile 289. As usual, there is evidence of sand build up and dune formation over the summer. The new sand buried most of the wood and washed up debris, leaving the beach looking remarkably clean.
  • Dune Formation
    Dune Formation
    September 22, 2014
  • New sand covering wood and debris
    New sand covering wood and debris
    September 22, 2014
Other Mile 289 Reports (53)


September 20, 2021 - ollikainen
This mile is not surveyed 4 times a year since it became a designated bird nesting area.  I decided to skip the others since our dog enjoys surveys far more than we do.
  • Tillamook South Jetty
  • Bird Nesting Restrictions
  • Winter Dune Erosion Remnant
  • Bird Nesting Area -  south end
  • Dogs Are Allowed After Sept 15


December 24, 2020 - ollikainen
There is no trace of nesting bird protection.  The signage and fencing are gone.  The big story on this survey is how many people are using Bayocean Spit.  Yes, the weather was great after a period...
  • Looking south from Tillamook south jetty
  • South Jetty Tillamook Bay
  • South Jetty Tillamook Bay
September 21, 2020 - ollikainen
September 15 ended the nesting bird restrictions on mile 289.  We always take our dog so it was the first complete survey for some time.  Originally the zone started at the south end of 289, but now...
  • South Jetty Tillamook Bay
  • South Jetty Tillamook Bay
August 1, 2020 - EJD
I saw so many different types of birds along the jetty, I'm no bird expert but I thought I saw pelicans, herons, cormorants, and sea gulls. I also noted thousands of Mole Crabs in the sand with the...
March 20, 2020 - ollikainen
Mile 289 is again restricted due to bird nesting.  The family dog by definition is part of the family.  We will not walk the entire length of the spit leaving part of the family at home.  We stopped...


December 5, 2019 - ollikainen
This survey was all about the jelly fish that covered the most recent wrack areas.  The jelly fish were found on the entire 4.5 mile spit.  This was our first survey since the beach restrictions were...
  • Jelly Fish on Mile 289
  • Jelly Fish on Mile 289
  • Upper Zone Shows Eel Grass from King Tides
June 16, 2019 - ollikainen
This is a partial survey.  In the spring,  the southern end of Mile 289 was posted as a bird nesting area.  Now the beginning of the restricted area is about a quarter mile closer to the jetty.   The...
March 21, 2019 - ollikainen
The signage is up again keeping all dogs off Mile 289.  By all means,  dogs need to be on leash and kept out of the sensitive areas.  But to exclude dogs only and by inference allowing any other type...
January 28, 2019 - ollikainen
There were a couple of firsts on this survey.  This is the first one we have done after missing the last equinox and solstice time slots.  It was good to be back at it.  We can blame bad weather,  ...


June 21, 2018 - ollikainen
I was surprised to find most of Mile 289 posted as off limits due to it being a nesting bird area.  Access is limited to the wet sand.  I pay attention to Bayocean Spit, but I did not see or hear of...
March 20, 2018 - ollikainen
The main impression on this survey is how clean the beach is from the wrack to the foredune.  It was almost difficult to spot manmade objects.  Mile 289 survived the winter big waves and storms...


December 11, 2017 - ollikainen
We took advantage of nice weather a week prior to the soltice for this survey.  The beach had a lot of debris,  mostly the result of an early flood event in Tillamook Bay.  Sand continues to grow at...
September 24, 2017 - ollikainen
The yearly cycle of Mile 289 continues.  During the summer sand is deposited and dunes form.  During the winter the ocean erodes the nearest of the new dunes.  But over the years,  the beach is...
June 22, 2017 - ollikainen
Summer arrived and brought very typical late day,  summer weather conditions to Mile 289.  The wind was really strong from the north.  As I crossed the spit from the bay side,  the Tillamook whistle...
March 21, 2017 - ollikainen
Some years back I commented on the condition of the south jetty.  This was after a series of boating accident that took the lives of a good number of people.  The damaged jetty created sand bars in...


December 13, 2016 - ollikainen
Since the fall equinox, an unusual visitor was stranded on Mile 289.  This buoy arrived in October, and the Coast Guard just retrieved it on Monday Dec 12.  There was a buoy tender working near the...
September 20, 2016 - ollikainen
The other thing that caught our attention was the thick, almost continuous wrack.  Most was sea (eel) grass,  but molted crab shells were very common.  Plastic bottles, crab floats, broken plastic...
June 21, 2016 - ollikainen
The solstice survey finds Mile 289 very clean and the recent history of sand build up continues.  Over the winter there was some minor dune erosion, but this is now completely erased.  New bright...
March 21, 2016 - ollikainen
The smell of the rotting velella was the most noticeable thing on this survey. They had arrived earlier and were now covered with blowing sand. The sand had a darkish color in the patches of heavy...
  • Cold unstable air brought rain and hail showers along with some sun breaks.
  • Earlier west winds deposited a lot of ocean debris. Quite a bit had Japanese characters. Some group had already collected much of this. Thank you!
  • Mile 289 has been expanding. The last 2 surveys have shown that the winter storms are eating away at new formed dunes


December 10, 2015 - ollikainen
This was a survey to document extreme conditions on Mile 289. 40 foot breaking waves pounded the beach. The morning high tide of 8.2 feet was bolstered by a storm surge caused by a major low. The...
  • Woody debris dominated the beach. Towards the southern end of the mile, there was no dune erosion.
  • Woody storm debris and no dune erosion
  • As I neared the jetty, there was some minor erosion to the smaller newly formed dune.
  • At the Jetty, all the previously deposited debris was gone, pushed up to the right side of the photo. The waves moved way up against the jetty at low tide.
  • Foam left after a wave surge. The ebbing tide is brown with flood silt.
  • Rock and debris at the start of the south jetty at Kincheloe Point.
September 21, 2015 - ollikainen
The beach was very clean. The SOLV clean up was 2 days earlier plus strong north wind moves sand and covers all but the largest debris. Sand build up is the recurrent issue with Mile 289.The other...
  • As described many times on this mile, sand is accumulating.  The sand blown by strong north winds cover most debris and wood
  • The beach clean up was held 2 days earlier.  Some volunteers made the long walk out to the end of the spit.  Good Job!
  • The ocean was too rough so the salmon fishing was confined to the bay
June 21, 2015 - ollikainen
The solstice skies were gray due to marine stratus. Sand and then more sand is the story of this survey. This mile has been accreting sand in recent years. The trend continues with new a new...
  • Bright green grass is growing on new dunes.  The grass on the dunes farther back is now brown
  • The 100 pound dog gives perspective to the size of the dunes forming in the dry sand
March 30, 2015 - ollikainen
It was a late, windy trip down the spit. The biggest change since December is the lack on debris and lack of dead Cassin's auklets. There were only a few bones and feathers left of the many that...
  • Beach was amazingly clean.
  • Not much debris, but still great smells.
  • Silver has to check out what the eagle has.  It is just above the wet sand area. (no telephoto on my camera)
  • It's been there a long time, but there was still some meat in the body.  Looks like talon tracks mixed in with dog tracks.


December 26, 2014 - ollikainen
There is a major die off (wreck) of Cassin's Auklets going on now. We found 126 on Mile 289. We do COASST surveys on Mile 286, and neighbors warned us of a huge number of small birds washing in a...
  • A couple examples of the Cassin's Auklet wreck.
  • Tillamook jetty as darkness is closing in.
June 20, 2014 - ollikainen
The solstice survey featured some unexpected discoveries. The beach was really clean. Just a few weeks back there was an surge of tsunami and other debris. State Parks sends a ranger in a pickup...
April 1, 2014 - ollikainen
Last fall, we thought there would be a big increase in tsunami debris over the winter. It didn't happen. You can find some scattered Japanese style wood construction beams and plastic bottles,...
  • Cape Meares as seen from the south jetty area of Tillamook Bay,  Mile 289.
  • There was not a big onslaught of tsunami debris over the winter.  Here is an example, but these items were commonplace a year or so ago.


December 16, 2013 - ollikainen
Took care of this survey a few days before the solstice to take advantage of some December sun. We did find an unusual dead bird. Jane of COASST confirmed that it is an immature white snow goose....
September 19, 2013 - ollikainen
Lots of new sand deposited on mile 289. This is confirmed by NANOOS scientists who were there using GPS equipment to monitor this beach and others all over the Northwest. They gave me their website...
  • Fall equinox on the south end of Mile 289 looking to the south jetty of Tillamook Bay.
June 22, 2013 - ollikainen
The plan was to watch the sun set at the solstice, but we were a day late. Saturday was cloudy and a light rain started a little prior to the 9:09 sunset. (according to my tidebook)
  • Taken from jetty.  Pyramid Rock is visible off Cape Meares (farthest off shore) . Three Arch Rocks off Oceanside are beyond
  • For the last several months, wooden debris from Japanese construction are showing up on Bayocean Spit.
March 18, 2013 - ollikainen
There were a good number of objects that could have been tsunami related. See photos for a confirmed piece of Japanese debris. Thanks to Liz Mack of COASST to find this link.
  • Winter storms did not affect the vegetation growing in front of the present foredune.
  • This has been in the ocean for some time
  • Had no idea what this was.  Liz Mack of COASST found one on Amazon.


December 13, 2012 - ollikainen
We caught the "king" tide at the jetty. Water was moving well up the oceanside of the jetty and then pouring into the bay side. The swells weren't huge, probably 10 feet. During a storm with 20 to...
September 23, 2012 - ollikainen
It was a very pleasant Sunday on Mile 289. A good number of boats were fishing for salmon both inside and outside the jaws of Tillamook Bay. The lack of man-made debris was remarkable. There was a...
June 21, 2012 - ollikainen
The day after the solstice was summerlike, as it should be. The big find today was a small refrigerator with confirmed Japanese language labels. It was confirmed by a COASST intern who reads...
  • It is confirmed to be of Japanese origin.  Obviously you think of tsunami debris, but it cannot be said for certain.
March 19, 2012 - ollikainen
The driftline was mostly fresh woody debris from the round of flooding last week. It is denser as you move south to the jetty itself.There was a large float on the beach that may have arrived from...
  • This large float is similar to the ones used in the Japanese oyster industry.  The dog is about 3 feet tall.


December 12, 2011 - ollikainen
We watched the sun set at 4:32 which is precisely the time listed on my tide chart. It is interesting to note that on the solstice, the chart has the sun setting at 4:35. The stern of a wrecked...
  • Wreckage of an earlier shipwreck is exposed at low tide
  • This could by a hydraulic pump and transmission
September 22, 2011 - ollikainen
At the equinox, the ocean swell has greatly increased in height. It was near 14 feet yesterday, and today's buoy report has it at 12 feet. The swell pushes the tides up to the highest levels of the...
  • Recent high swells have pushed the tides up high on the beach.  The new summer vegetation is being inundated.
  • Sand continues to build on Mile 289.  About a decade ago, it was a 10 to 15 foot climb from the beach to the taller rock in the middle of the photo
June 21, 2011 - ollikainen
It was a sunny summer solstice on Mile 289. The continuing sand accretion can be documented by the stern section of the wrecked crab boat that has been on the beach since Feb. 2006. It was buried...
  • In 2006 this boat sank at the mouth of Tillamook Bay.  The stern section was trapped in sand afterwards and basically locked in a fixed position.
March 20, 2011 - ollikainen
It was a cool, rainy day, typical of this year's spring. There were more than the typical number plastic containers of all sizes and shapes littering the beach. The SOLV volunteers will find Mile...


December 21, 2010 - ollikainen
It was a cool, windy day on 289. The mile continues to be very stable, no signs of erosion over the years. The north jetty was rebuilt over the summer, and crabbers and the Coast Guard commented in...
  • sand built up during the summer is washing back to sea, but it is not encroaching into the foredune
October 11, 2010 - ollikainen
The north Tillamook jetty has been rebuilt over the summer. The Corp of Engineers has done some improvement on the access road to the south jetty. The south jetty needs the same treatment.The road...
  • The remains of the Double Eagle which capsized entering Tillamook Bay on 10/3/2010.
June 21, 2010 - ollikainen
We had a pleasant evening walk out on the bayside of the spit and returned on the beach. The big news is the construction on the north jetty. Huge rocks were stockpiled in Bayview for months, and...
March 24, 2010 - ollikainen
It was great to see the large number of SOLV bags loaded and ready for hauling. The volunteers who walked all the way to the jetty deserve kudos. A State Park truck was there collecting bags, but it...
  • SOLV volunteers did a great job on Mile 289.


December 19, 2009 - ollikainen
Mile 289 has weathered the first winter storms without erosion to the foredune. We were interested to see if there were any dead brown pelicans. There were none, but we did find 8 dead birds. (5...
  • Near the south jetty of Tillamook Bay looking south towards Cape Meares
September 14, 2009 - ollikainen
It was a perfect late summer day with temperatures in the 70's. The dunes continue to grow westward as sand builds at the end of the spit. On the bay side, ODF crews have cut brush and trees along...
  • Dunes building to the west
June 21, 2009 - ollikainen
Sand is building up and new dunes are forming. This is the norm for Mile 289. The only erosion is on the bay side of the mile. The access road has a few sinkholes, but they have not increased in...
  • Sand building up and dune formation
March 21, 2009 - ollikainen
Sand and driftwood pile up on Mile 289 with the prevailing southerly winter winds. Erosion is not an issue on the beach. There is erosion on the jetty road (bayside) before the jetty turns...
  • Near the south jetty.  prevailing winter south winds pile up sand and debris against jetty
  • Near jetty looking towards Cape Meares


December 16, 2008 - ollikainen
It was cold and clear on mile 289. The ocean was calm. A few days earlier waves of 20 feet plus were breaking all across the jaws and into the channel. Last week's storms and high tides deposited a...
  • Calm day at the jetty after very high storm swells and tides.
September 21, 2008 - ollikainen
Sand continues to build up on mile 289. The foredune has smaller vegetation covered dunes in front.The stern and a large piece of deck are still visible from the wreck of the crabboat, Catherine M.
  • The crab boat Catherine M was capsized by huge waves  while entering Tillamook Bay.  3 lives were lost.  Very little is left after 2 1/2? years.
June 19, 2008 - ollikainen
The once fresh woody storm and flood debris from last winter is now bleached white. There is a large pile of this driftwood against the upper part of the south jetty. No signs of erosion are...
March 21, 2008 - ollikainen
Snow is still visible on the higher peaks of the Coast Range, and last night we had hail and snow (non sticking) on beach. Spring might be several weeks later than normal.Mile 289 continues to see...


September 18, 2007 - ollikainen
Busy day on mile 289 due to Air Force training. Sand has built up during the summer. The normal pattern is for the winter storms to scour away most of it. But since I have lived nearby, the tip...
June 15, 2007 - ollikainen
Mile 289 continues to be stable and human activity is limited. Bayocean Spit is popular with equestrians. The Tillamook Bay jetties are problematic. As the swells rise, there are breaking waves that...
March 21, 2007 - ollikainen
Few changes to mile 289. During the winter, another boating tragedy at the mouth of Tillamook Bay shows that the jetties need to be repaired.