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Clatsop Spit, Astoria

Categories: Bodies of Water, Nature & Parks
Inspirock Rating:
4.8/5 based on 30+ reviews on the web
Clatsop Spit is a giant sand spit on the Pacific coast along U.S. 101 between Astoria and the north end of Tillamook Head in Clatsop County, northwest Oregon at the mouth of the Columbia River. The Clatsop Spit was formed by Columbia River sediment brought to the coast by the river flow after the last ice age ended approximately 8500 years ago and the ocean level rose. Here it worked over and shaped by the wind and the waves until a vast and sandy plain was formed.ShipwrecksThe seas around Clatsop Spit were known to be treacherous and there were many shipwrecks, including the paddle steamer General Warren in which 42 people died in the surf in 1852 and in 1859, the schooner Rambler washed up on Clatsop Spit. No trace of her crew was ever found. In 1860, the barque Leonese washed up on Clatsop Spit upside down and her crew lost. In 1883 the crew of the luxury schooner J.C. Cousins operated by the State of Oregon similarly vanished as she washed ashore. Other shipwrecks include the barquentine Makah (1888), and the bark Peter Iredale in 1906. It is estimated that since 1800 more than 2,000 vessels and close to 1,000 lives have been lost.
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  • The Columbia River enters the Pacific Ocean at the Clatsop Spit. The Clatsop Spit can be viewed in Fort Stevens State Park. The entire park has lots of things to see and do. There is tower where we vi...  read more »
  • We were camped at the fort and came here to see the waves from the viewing tower. The weather was flat calm for the days we were here, but the Columbia and the Pacific create some wonderful waves arou...  read more »
  • Make sure to go out to the observation tower that overlooks the jetty. It's where the Columbia River meets the Pacific Ocean. The waves against the rocks are incredible and the views are spectacular! 
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