Haystack Rock is a busy place

The Oregonian ran an article about the abuses suffered by the 16.5 million year old icon at Cannon Beach.

  • Haystack became part of the Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge in 1968 and was granted status as a wilderness area in 1978.
  • In 1991, the state designated the rock and an area extending 300 yards around it as a marine garden.
  • Last year, interpretive guides stopped 509 visitors from violating the rules: 138 of those were trying to take some of the marine animals home, 232 were would-be rock climbers and 139 were harassing wildlife in and around the rock.
  • In 2005, guides talked to a total of 1,366 people who were doing something they weren’t supposed to, including 599 who were climbing in the refuge and 449 who were about to pocket an animal.

Here is an another example of our natural beauty and resources suffereing damage by our current societies lack of respect for our environment. Most Oregonians understand that and can act accordingly. But certainly not all of us.

We took a quick trip to Cannon Beach this weekend, and of course, our walk on the beach took us past the rock. There wereHaystackCrowd2_1.jpg about 60 people at swarming over the barnacle covered rocks at the base, during the low tide. The Haystack Rock Awareness Program was there with a truck and information kiosk. And volunteers wereHaystackCrowd3.jpg there to provide information, and I heard at least two volunteers politely ask people to not walk on the wildlife covered rocks. These people had walk directly past, by my count 6 signs directing them to “walk on sand or small rocks”. One guy had even brought his dog out to walk out in the tide-pools. These volunteers are doing fun but difficult job, for a very good cause. They just seem a little over-matched.

Extra Points Trivia Question: According to Lewis L MacArthur’s wonderful book “Oregon Geographic Names” how many Haystack Rocks are there in Oregon? (Three)

  1. At Cannon Beach in in Clatsop county
  2. Pacific City, a mile southwest of Cape Kiwanda, in Tillamook county
  3. In Wallowa county. At T 4N, R45E. Hey, its a remote area, and not really close to anything else.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *