The tide is reclaiming most of the beach even as we arrive, a family’s worth of hands, each with a variety of beach accessories in tow. Small craggy islands hang just offshore. These “stacks”, as they’re known locally, are actually former holes in a once much higher ground which were filled in by volcanic flow from Idaho some millions of years ago. The contents of the holes hardened to become basalt, and eventually, as the rest of the coast was washed out to sea by the Pacific, they were all that remained.
Today they’re simply a beautiful backdrop to a perfect day at the beach. I start a small fire, crack a Ninkasi IPA. The boys begin to dig in the sand at their individual levels. Nanny walks to the water and takes it all in.
The air is crisp here even in early Autumn. The water is frigid. The mountains meet up against the ocean mainly as massive cliffs overlooking the world’s largest ocean. The sun will set on clear skies, rare for the Oregon Coast.
We lived here for 9 months while our middle and wildest son, Winter, was born. He’s right at home here, where jagged rocky trails swirl through coastal mountains before arriving at beaches. Where candy shops are as common as craft beers. Oregon, where everyone recycles and no one ever seems to actually be from here.
It’s a previous homeland returned. We all feel the nostalgia and debate renting a house for a month in nearby Astoria. It could just be all talk, it could be a shift of reality. It doesn’t matter what actually happens, because the “could be” is the whole point of everything we’re doing these days.