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By the time I got to Driftwood Wayside, a lot of people had already arrived for their New Years Day beach walks, some 30 vehicles in the parking lot and 30 - 40 people down on the beach, accompanied by at least half as many dogs, almost all leashed.  Driftwood Beach is very flat and so wide during an outgoing tide that despite their numbers the beachgoers and their dogs almost disappeared in its expanse. The sand was still mostly wet from a recent storm with heavy surf that had crossed the beach and had pushed the driftline up against the dunes. Given the rough weather, I was surprised not to find any beached birds, and very little debris. I did come across an old friend, a huge old growth driftwood log that I had first seen and photographed south of Buckley Creek in June and October 2020, then again in February 2021 after it moved north of the creek. Then it had disappeared.  It's back now, and during its absence I've walked from Alsea Bay to Seal Rock without seeing it, so maybe it's been out at sea.  All in all, today's walk was a pretty nice way to begin 2023.

Conditions

Temperature: 48 F. Cloud Cover: Partly Cloudy. Tide Level: 3.0 feet.

Human Activities

Number of people: 35. Number of dogs: 20. Walking or running: 30. Playing in sand: 2. Sitting: 3.

Vehicles

Cars/trucks parking: 30.

Notable Wildlife

I don't think I saw a single live bird, not even gulls.

Driftline Content

Small rocks, Seaweeds and seagrass, Shells, Animal casings (e.g., crab, shrimp molt), Wood pieces, Marine debris (plastic, styrofoam, etc. washing in from the sea). The beach was fairly clean except, as is common after a storm or high tides, small bits of hard plastic were scattered in the driftline.

Report Images

Driftwood Beach looking north from wayside parking lot
Driftwood Wayside parking lot
It's nice to see the new ADA viewing platform being used
Looking west from Driftwood Wayside access path
Driftwood Wayside parking and 66 access looking from beach
Driftline washed up against dunes
Big pile of Bull Kelp near dunes
Driftwood Beach, looking north from Buckley Creek
Old growth driftwood log, first photo 6/24/2020
Driftwood log north of Buckley Creek 2/13/2021

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All Mile 204 Reports

Showing 8 of 55 reports

Mile 204

Driftwood Beach Wayside, Buckley Creek

November 19, 2023

Today marked my latest sighting of the old growth driftwood log that I've admired and whose comings and goings from Driftwood Beach I've documented since June 2020, when I first photographed it high on the beach south of Buckley Creek.

Jon French

Mile 204

Driftwood Beach Wayside, Buckley Creek

August 11, 2023

I had read that the 265-foot vessel Seacor Lee would be anchoring a mile off Driftwood Beach in support of OSU's PacWave South wave energy testing project, positioned so that divers from the ship could perform work on previously installed seafloor conduits.

Jon French

Mile 204

Driftwood Beach Wayside, Buckley Creek

June 17, 2023

I haven't walked Driftwood Beach regularly since the PacWave South wave energy project completed work underground in the Driftwood parking lot.

Jon French

Mile 204

Driftwood Beach Wayside, Buckley Creek

January 1, 2023

By the time I got to Driftwood Wayside, a lot of people had already arrived for their New Years Day beach walks, some 30 vehicles in the parking lot and 30 - 40 people down on the beach, accompanied by at least half as many dogs, almost all leashed.

Jon French

Mile 204

Driftwood Beach Wayside, Buckley Creek

October 23, 2022

This was probably the last dependably dry Mile 204 walk before the rains begin in earnest.

Jon French

Mile 204

Driftwood Beach Wayside, Buckley Creek

August 17, 2022

After the morning fog lifted and before the marine layer moved in, I walked from Seal Rock on Mile 205 to Beach Access 66C on Mile 203.

Jon French

Mile 204

Driftwood Beach Wayside, Buckley Creek

June 3, 2022

Driftwood Wayside is open again after PacWave's departure, but I was the only visitor on this breezy, drizzly day.

Jon French

Mile 204

Driftwood Beach Wayside, Buckley Creek

May 10, 2022

The PacWave South wave energy project hosted a BBQ today at Driftwood Wayside for staff and neighbors to celebrate the completion of construction work here and the reopening of the Wayside later this month.

Jon French