Four Things to Look for at Newport’s Beaches
Grey whales migrate past our beaches in the spring and fall, but resident grey whales can be seen year-round not far offshore. Other whales also make occasional appearances close enough to shore to be seen from the beach. The only time I’ve seen orcas in Oregon was from Agate Beach. Look for spouts or lumpy dark backs in the water from a high vantage point.
Our national bird is thriving on the Oregon coast. They are commonly spotted at Agate Beach (particularly when they feast on murres nesting offshore of Yaquina Head in the summertime) and Ona Beach.
Debris ripped from Japan’s shores by the devastating 2011 tsunami has already been found on Oregon’s beaches. If you find small items of Japanese origin, they can be placed in the trash or recycling, or kept as souvenirs. Larger flotsam, especially pieces that could pose a hazard to navigation, should be reported by calling 2-1-1, or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Winter storms often uncover agates buried in the sand, and erode them out of the cliffs that line many of our beaches. Agates are translucent stones that are often banded; they come in a range of colors and sizes, and are particularly striking when tumbled or polished.