I went to college in Washington State, so the Oregon coast was only a stones throw away. With primo waves and really good camping, it was a weekend respite from actually studying for finals. It seemed, in my embellished memory, that every few weekends on the coast I was trying to impress some new girl of the month by showing her how to start a fire with white gas. I’m amazed I always managed to keep my eyebrows.
We always use to land in Seaside,OR (and still do). We surfed at several other spots, but it always seemed that the waves were better in Seaside Cove for some reason.
Here is the skinny on Seaside Cove…
When you get out to the beach in Seaside Cove you’ll see the sand change to rock as the cove curves west. The cove resembles a north jetty, which can make for a long left wave moving to wash. You can also get a short ride right at low tide, but this will put you right back on the jagged rocks quickly. By going right, though, your trajectory can put you quickly back into that quick rip that can push you out speedily for another go. At high tides, the ride is washy and most of the people you’ll see out there are riding longboards at those times.
Can’t really suggest this as a beginners spot. I would try Pacific City if you’re into driving a bit (More on that locale in another post). Even though I did learn here, I would never wish a newbie to get washing machined in a closeout set that this cove is popular for serving up. I endured several long washy rides coughing my lungs out until I got the hang of it. Good thing is that you won’t get the South wind exposure. You’ll get some good rides out of a North to SW swell.
Though locals would like to keep it quiet, it is definitely no secret when you surf in the Cove that you may see some really good swell out on the Southwest point. If the swell is good, this is where the locals go. The waves out there can be awesome and frequently overhead, if not double. But if you don’t have Oregon plates on your car, I would suggest being hesitant to go out there unless you like confrontation.
Check out the Seaside Cove’s real-time remote operated webcam that you can adjust to check the weather. You can’t really see the swell, just some wash.
How do you get there?…
Once you get to Seaside, OR headed North on HWY 101, you’ll turn left on Avenue U as you first come into town. Go about a 1/2 mile and turn left on S Edgewood St. and don’t stop until you see the beach parking spots, and bathrooms.
Nehalem Bay State Park is primo! It is a little bit of a drive south of Seaside but worth it. What we would do is drive to Seaside for breakfast in the morning to check the surf and gradually work our way back to Nehalem Bay if the swell was junk at one spot or another. Contact in advance to reserve a spot as they have a tendency to fill up during the busy summer season and warmer holidays. They also have several yurts there, which can make for a fun DRY surf weekend with friends. The coast tends to get just a “tad” drizzly.
(More locations coming soon: They will be linked here)