Nestucca Bay, Pacific City

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Nestucca Bay is an estuary in Northern Oregon formed by a coastal sand spit, or bar, where the mouth of the Nestucca River meets the Pacific Ocean. It is near the town of Pacific City, about 1 mile (1.6 km) south of Cape Kiwanda, and about 12 miles (19 km) south of Cape Lookout. The area of the bay is about 1,000 acres (405 ha). The Nestucca Spit includes Bob Straub State Park, named for the former Oregon Governor. A part of Nestucca Bay is included in the Nestucca Bay National Wildlife Refuge

The Nestucca Spit separates the estuary from the ocean and is an important barrier beach that breaks the impact of destructive ocean waves before they can reach the estuary and mainland. Pacific City is the principal community of the area and is located at the north end of the spit. Nestucca Bay was historically a rich fishing area and beginning in 1854 settlers began arriving from the Tillamook Valley. By 1876, the 200 remaining Nestugga people were relocated to a reservation on the Salmon and Siletz River. By 1926, commercial gillnetting had depleted the bay of salmon, so fishermen switched to surf-launched dories, but over time this fishery also dwindled and today only a few recreational fishermen keep the tradition alive.

The head of the bay is surrounded by the Nestucca National Wildlife Refuge and most of the spit is protected from development by the Bob Straub State Park. Read more here and here, and about Pacific City here. Click here to download the CoastView app and explore more of Nestucca Bay and the Oregon coast.


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