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How to love Cannon Beach like a local

 

Love it like a local and Cannon Beach will love you back

Everybody loves the beach, but Cannon Beach is more than just a beach and if you learn to love it like a local, it will reward you with memorable experiences that will find a special place in your heart forever. There’s no better place to look than to the people who live here for lessons on how to truly experience what a magnificent place this is. Here are the top three ways to love Cannon Beach like a local:

Recognize that this amazing coastal experience is not about sunny skies

Although sunshine is always welcomed, the beauty of Cannon Beach is not just about sunny skies. Far from it. Cannon Beach has a year-round cool and mild marine climate filled with dramatic skies and everchanging conditions. And we love that about it. We understand that most of the time only a rain jacket stands between us and the most authentic and transformative Oregon Coast experiences.

By dressing for the weather, our beach walks don’t have to be avoided or cut short by a passing shower and that means we don’t miss the rainbows and spectacular light show of sun breaks between weather systems. You might catch us lingering on the beach on an overcast day at the day’s end, because on those frequent occasions that the sun does make a last-minute appearance, the beauty of those particular sunsets is nothing short of life altering.

We know there’s no better day to venture into the rainforest than when it’s damp and cloudy because those are the days that mist casts magic in the form of filtered beams of light through the giant spruce trees. We don’t care that it can be muddy. We have shoes for that and, after all, it’s the rainforest, not somewhere to visit only on dry, sunny days.

Embrace the magic season and its wild encounters

There are really only two seasons in Cannon Beach: summer and the magic season. Can you guess which one we prefer? As soon as the summer crowds disappear, herds of Roosevelt Elk return to the coastal lowlands and emerge from the misty rainforest to feed on the lush grassy areas around town. We might laugh it off as trading one kind of traffic for another, but we love seeing our wild neighbors and enjoy watching them from a respectful distance for our own safety and that of these magnificent creatures.

To us, summer waves are boring. We prefer the thunderous roar of the ocean whipped up by an offshore storm and watching waves explode against the rocky shoreline in a display better than any fireworks show. Although we take our own advice and watch for sneaker waves, are aware of tides and never turn our backs on the ocean, we know that winds and storm tides make for the most interesting beachcombing of the year.

Fair weather visitors may avoid our often-damp spring, but Tufted Puffins love it and we love them. Like clockwork, Puffins and several other varieties of seabirds return from the open seas in April to nest on near shore rocks, staying only long enough to raise their chicks before returning to the sea. Fall and winter attract their own flocks of feathered friends and we never tire of watching Bald Eagles on the hunt or the wide variety of wintering fowl that take refuge on Ecola Creek.

We’re always thrilled when we see whale spouts from the 20,000 Gray Whales that make their way along our coastline during spring and winter on their amazing 10,000-mile round trip annual journey.

Protect this place we all love

We don’t just live here, we consider ourselves temporary stewards of this amazing place. We love our clean beaches and wildlife, so you might see us collecting plastics that wash ashore, depositing it at the trash cans located at many beach entrances. We support and volunteer with our Haystack Rock Awareness Program that shares the magic of Haystack Rock with visitors and educates beach goers about this remarkable resource and federally protected natural area. We don’t consider our beaches just a playground. We love the vibrant and varied life we get to experience here. If we see an injured bird, seal or sea lion on the beach, we know that a phone call to the city activates a network of volunteers prepared to take appropriate action. We’re privileged that not only can we walk nearly everywhere we need to in our little town, but that it will be a walk likely filled with wildlife sightings and inspiring vistas. We do these things because we love it here and if you understand the way we feel, we invite you to love Cannon Beach like a local. We promise you, it will love you back.