Seaside: In the News

Grant’s Getaways: Paddling the Neawanna in Seaside

July 30, 2015 | by Grant McOmie

If our summer heat wave is getting the best of you – sapping your energy and leaving you feeling generally uncomfortable, perhaps it’s time for a cool retreat at a place you’d least expect: the backyard of one of the Oregon Coast’s most popular towns. (Watch the complete episode here).

I recently enjoyed a short and gentle kayak trip for folks of all abilities and surprise: I felt a million miles away paddling from city hub-bub on the Neawanna (nee-uh-wanna) River near Seaside.

“I think bringing people back into the center of themselves is important,” said Josh Uithof, a river guide who works for Kayak Tillamook. “So getting people out on the water allows them to experience nature and discover something they didn’t think they could do.”

The beauty of travel in a canoe or kayak is the serenity you discover as you realize there’s no such thing as a bad day on the water. Neawanna River flows into the greater Necanicum Estuary where the scenery is never twice the same!

Josh’s co-guide, Jodie Dodge, prepped and led our small party of paddlers along the short three-mile trip that reaches from the freshwater to the ocean. “Kayaking brings you back to nature being on the water – it’s a place we all lose in our busy worlds so you just take a deep breath and relax and enjoy,” she said.

It’s easier than ever for more people to escape their busy worlds thanks to a new ADA accessible boat launch. The $60,000 kayak and canoe launch was paid for through a partnership between the local Necanicum Watershed Council, the city of Seaside and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Restoration and Enhancement Board.

Watershed Council member Melyssa Graeper said it replaced a dangerous dock whose time had come. The new launch opened to the public in March and it’s been a boon to the community. “People love it – there has been tons of use down here so far – way more than we had with the old dock – lots of families with young kids down here too.”

After you launch, keep watch overhead for an osprey nest that rises above the launch more than 70 feet. The nest has a unique feature to it too: you can peer into the nest online thanks to a new web cam sponsored by the Necanicum Watershed Council.

Back on the water, Jon Rahl with the Seaside Visitors Bureau said that local folks are excited at the prospect of more people visiting Seaside and they are seeing it from a different point of view. “We know that they come here for the beauty of the beach but when you add an asset like this – an accessible asset like this – that is one more enhancement to the travel experience.”

Darren Gooch, the Sunset Empire Park & Recreation Director, agreed and offered, “I see more and more folks who thought they couldn’t do it before now have the opportunity to paddle and feel more comfortable about getting in and out of the water.”

“And you don’t have to be in the best shape,” added Utihof. “You get out here and get into places that no one else can really see – it’s great that it is so accessible too.”

And after all, that’s really what it’s all about: discovering a timeless place with few folks around and feel closer to nature.

Editor’s Note: Grant McOmie is a Pacific Northwest broadcast journalist, teacher and author who writes and produces stories and special programs about the people, places, outdoor activities and environmental issues of the Pacific Northwest. A fifth generation Oregon native, Grant’s roots run deepest in the central Oregon region near Prineville and Redmond where his family continues to live.

and so much more!

Seaside’s Hospitality Industry News: A New Resource for Seaside Tourism

The mission of the City of Seaside Visitors Bureau has long been to attract, inform and help assist visitors spending time along O...

Learn More
Hiking Saddle Mountain is one of our four favorite hikes around Seaside.
4 Favorite Hikes Around Town

The sheer variety of trails in and around Seasie Oregon means you have plenty of hiking options, from kid-friendly strolls on the Prom to more strenuous climbs with stunning views.

Learn More
Oregon’s North Coast Video Series

Oregon's North Coast Spring Videos

Learn More
The Perfect S’more

As the sun continues to make more regular appearances, I continue to look forward to external sunshine. And, yearning for a sweet treat, I’m reminded of that summer favorite: S’mores!

Learn More
All About Storm Watching in Seaside

Having grown up in Seaside, Keith Chandler knows and appreciates the beauty and the power of watching storms and high tides on the...

Learn More
Sea Foam on the shore's of The Cove in Seaside, Oregon
The Cove, Seaside’s Natural Treasure

Exploring Seaside's Cove, a natural wonder to be enjoyed by locals and visitors alike

Learn More
Elevated View

The highest point in Seaside, Oregon in the 1920s.

Learn More
How to Explore the Historic Gilbert District

While many visit Seaside to stroll the Prom, ride the carousel and load up on saltwater taffy, walk east on Broadway over the Neca...

Learn More
Clatsop Lodging Industry Jobs Surpass Pre-Recession Levels in Past Two Years

According to preliminary estimates, average employment in Clatsop County’s accommodations industry rose by 50 jobs to 1,310 in 2...

Learn More
Discover Marine Wonders at Low Tide

One of the great delights when visiting Seaside — especially for families — is coming into contact with the otherworldly wonde...

Learn More
Grant’s Getaways: Paddling the Neawanna in Seaside

If our summer heat wave is getting the best of you – sapping your energy and leaving you feeling generally uncomfortable, perhap...

Learn More
Paddle Neawanna Creek
How to Paddle Seaside

Spend a little time in Seaside, and you’ll find yourself itching to paddle on the rivers and ponds.

Learn More
Flying Into the Seaside Airport

Visitors often see an aerial photo of Seaside Municipal Airport and ask, “Are you sure that’s not Hawaii?” The lush green la...

Learn More
Pedal Boating through Seaside

Paddle boating Seaside is another unique way to see Seaside while getting a little exercise in the process.

Learn More
A Seagull’s View

Aerial shot of Seaside Oregon from the 1920s

Learn More
Wildlife Along the Coast

Driving highway 101 can yield miles of scenic wonders

Learn More
Going for a Dip in the 1920s

Seaside ocean antics in the late 1920s

Learn More
Rebranding Seaside Gives us new Opportunity for Promoting Seaside

How do you describe Seaside to your friends, neighbors and relatives? Better yet, how would you, if asked? You may have an answer ...

Learn More