Mile 291 Report

November 27, 2016
by cemilligan

Camp Magruder north, Watseco, Twin Rocks SW
Sunday 10:00 AM
50° F
Calm/Light from the SW
Humans / Pets:
Walking / Running:
Apparent Violations:
As usual there was a consist amount of litter throughout the mile. Today's trash seemed to be more along the lines of debris washed up from a fishing vessel, i.e. broken pieces of plastic, shredded netting, rope, styrofoam, and ripped up floats. The litter was also pushed up very high on to the beach, I'm assuming this was due to the recent King Tides.
Cars/Trucks parking:
Cars/Trucks on beach, allowed:
Cars/Trucks on beach, prohibited:
Activity Comments:
There were three other people other than myself on the beach this morning. They were accompanying me on my mile assisting me with picking up trash and observing things. The weather was frigid and the tide was coming in, not exactly making it the most ideal of days to be on the beach. I think the locals and visitors to Rockaway agreed with me on this as we didn't see a single other person during our 3 hours on the beach today.
Notable Wildlife:
Minimal seaweed at the edge of the surf. Fewer crabs and razor clams than on previous visits.
Dead Birds:
Not sure on the species as a lot of them were pretty deteriorated and unrecognizable. I documented as many as I could and attached photos.
Fish & Invertebrates:
Kelp or Algae·Shells·Animal casings (e.g. crab, shrimp molt)·Wood pieces·Land-based debris (picnics, etc.)·Plastic pellets·Styrofoam·Ocean-based debris (from fishing boats, ship trash, etc.)
There was a lot of VERY large driftwood at the edge of the driftline. Many of which looked like very large, heavy trees that hadn't been in the ocean very long.
New Development:
Natural Changes:
The creek towards the northern section of the mile has washed out and widened considerably due to the increased rainfall over the past week. It is more of a lagoon than a creek now as it is over a foot deep and at least 12 yards wide.

My family and I chose to spend Thanksgiving and the weekend after in Rockaway Beach.  It was a blustery, wet vacation, but a great one all the same.  Sunday we decided to make the trek down the beach to report on my mile.  Due to the large amount of rain we have been getting lately, we entered the mile from the south rather than the north.  The tide was coming in and the wind was blowing consistenly from the south, making the trip up the beach not too bad.  We collected about 3 large garbage bags of trash.  Most of the debris was located high up the shoreline and consisted of debris from ships/fishing vessels, with a minimal amount appearing to be generated from shoreline visitors.  The one, really odd, deviation was there were about 50 cabbages and a very large pumpkin on the beach.  This really puzzled us as we weren't sure if someone had dumped them, or if they had washed up from a ship.  Interesting conversation topic.  I'm guessing the positioning high on the beach was due to the recent king tides we've had.  There was also less evidence of partying and firework detination.  There were not very many gulls on the beach today, however there were 7 deceased birds along the driftline. In regards to human activity, there really wasn't much of anyone on the beach today, as we were the only humans and dogs on the beach the entire time we were there.    

  • Cabbages we came upon during the beginning of the walk.
    At the southern entry to Mile 291 running north 100 yards.
    November 27, 2016
  • Entry of beach looking north.
    November 27, 2016
  • November 27, 2016
  • This guy accompanied all of the cabbages we came upon.
    November 27, 2016
  • November 27, 2016
  • I'm not sure what species of bird this is, but there were 4 of these found along the length of our mile.
    November 27, 2016
  • I'm not sure what species of bird this is, but there were 2 of these found along the length of our mile.
    November 27, 2016
  • Western Grebe
    Western Grebe, there was 1 of these found along the length of our mile.
    November 27, 2016
  • Creek at the north end of the mile that has widened dramatically due to high rain fall.
    November 27, 2016
  • Creek at the north end of the mile that has widened dramatically due to high rain fall.
    November 27, 2016
Other Mile 291 Reports (18)


January 24, 2023 - sndlwd
Widened to beach access could increase king tide current flow toward homes. Fresh water creek changes every season depending on sand deposits.
  • New trash, I'm there once a week
January 14, 2023 - BerrieC
Significant erosion at Pine Beach Loop and North Magruder during November/December King tides. 3 to 6 feet additional Dune erosion at McGruder. 20+/- additional trees down.
  • N Magruder fallen trees
  • N Magruder erosion
  • Pine Beach Loop erosion


November 15, 2022 - BerrieC
Gorgeous, sunny day with very calm surf. Nothing unusual or of note, other than the dead skate on the beach. 
August 11, 2022 - BerrieC
3 groups of Snowy Plovers feeding a the water's edge, approx 120 birds between Twin Rocks and Watseco. Other items: Small bag of dog poop. Buoy Beer label. Large amounts of seaweed in which debris...
  • Seaweed
  • Dead Common Murre
  • Dead Common Murre
  • Dead Common Murre
  • Dead Common Murre
  • Dead Common Murre
  • Dead Common Murre
  • Firewood
  • Firewood
  • Snowy Plovers
  • Snowy Plovers
  • Garbage on beach


September 13, 2021 - MossierJ
I was mistaken in identifying murlettes - they are immature common murres.  The live murre was still alive the following morning (9/13 at 6:30am), but then a crow came and was pecking at it.  
September 12, 2021 - MossierJ
1 live murrelet, 1 dead murrelet, 1 dead cormorant.  Didn't know what to do about the live murrelet on the beach.  Called North Coast Wildlife Center, but it was after hours.  Left the bird on the...
  • Live Murrelet
  • Dead murrelet
August 5, 2021 - JGarcia
I didn't walk the whole mile on this date.  A friend texted, telling me that there was a dead mammal on the beach.  I walked down and found the dead animal (porpoise or dolphin) and took several...
July 26, 2021 - BerrieC
June 12, 2021 - BerrieC
May 28, 2021 - JGarcia
February 10, 2021 - JGarcia
In general, a nice day at the beach.  There weren't many people out.  Surprisingly little man-made debris along the wrack.  The most obvious change since the new year is the beach erosion and erosion...


September 28, 2020 - JGarcia
It was an absolutely beautiful sunny and clear day on mile 291.  Quite a few people were out strolling and playing with their families.  Very little man-made debris. 2 jets flew over and also a Coast...
  • barrel on beach
June 12, 2020 - JGarcia
A cloudy day at the beach.  Not many people in my mile. About a dozen in all.  4 dogs, all off-leash.  I found just a few pieces of marine debris in the wrack, small plastic pieces.  Lots of shell...


July 9, 2017 - cemilligan
Driving down 101 from the intersection of highways 26 and 101, my husband, our dogs, and I were very excited to get to our mile. The sun was shining, the surf looked wonderful, and we were excited to...
April 30, 2017 - cemilligan
April 30th was a beautiful day to be on the coast.  The temperature was a comfortable 55 degrees, light breeze from the north, partly cloudy.  Warm enough to wear a t-shirt and jeans.  My husband and...
January 28, 2017 - cemilligan
Today was a beautiful day at the beach, partly sunny, light breeze, warm air temperature.  The tide was almost at its highest point.  Several people were walking around the beach, enjoying the sand...
  • Styrofoam pellets, cellophane worm casings
  • driftwood pushed into vegetation-King Tide
  • Crab pot deposited by King Tide
  • Normal high tide
  • Western Grebe, Aechmophorus occidentalis
  • visitors on beach
  • large tree trunk brought on shore during King Tide


October 23, 2016 - cemilligan
Today I was joined by my husband and dog for our scouting.  It was a beautiful day on the coast so a lot of people were out enjoying the day.  During the 4 hours we spent on the beach there were...
August 28, 2016 - cemilligan
 Upon my arrival at the beach the weather was quite dreary with slight rain and wind from the south.  There were approximately 20 people and 1 dog walking, running, collecting agates, building sand...