Treasures in Newport

April 16, 2018

Two friends joined us for a getaway to Beverly Beach near Newport. It was midweek, so only a handful of people passed us as we walked toward the Yaquina Head Lighthouse.

We love visiting the Oregon Coast. The rhythm of the waves. The miles upon miles of sand beckoning us to take a run, a brisk walk or just a meandering stroll to look for treasures.

Oregon’s beaches aren’t covered with shells like Sanibel Island in Florida. Shells are rare and rarer still are sand dollars. It’s uncommon to find these flat sea urchins completely intact by the time they make it over the rocks and tumble ashore. But that day we found a whole one that was no bigger than a child’s fingernail.

We discovered another treasure in among a huge pile of jumbled rocks. These letter-like symbols were etched on this stone in a straight line. A curious message in an ancient language, maybe Sanskrit? The four of us quickly discounted that notion and were left intrigued by how and what sea creatures had made these unusual designs.

Some may be surprised to learn that there aren’t many days at Oregon’s Central Coast where people wear anything but jeans and sweatshirts. It’s not that fashion dictates it, weather does. However, today was one of those red-letter days when we could wear shorts and T-shirts. In fact, it was actually hot. That word is fortunately not uttered often in Oregon, especially at the beach. One of the local banks even offered ice-cold lemonade to their customers because they considered it a heat wave at 75 degrees.

Another thing that was unusual about the day was that there was little wind. We relished the opportunity to sit out on the porch while looking at the ocean that was almost as smooth as a lake.

All of a sudden, a white puff appeared above the sapphire water. Then another. And another. The resident pod of whales that lives close to Otter Rock had decided to put on a show for us while we ate dinner. One of them even decided to wave hello to us. Life’s simple pleasures. Truly delightful.

About The

MacKenzie Freeman
MacKenzie Freeman fell in love with Oregon during college and then with a native Oregonian. Her writing style gives a modern twist to the phrase “a picture is worth a thousand words.” Each story, including these, describes a photograph in exactly 1,000 characters. She enjoys providing armchair and real-world travelers with a sense of place in her travel books and blog featured on