Seaside Stories

How To Surf Seaside

June 26, 2018 | by Shellie Bailey-Shah

Surfing in Oregon? Yes! The North Coast has some of the best breaks in the Pacific Northwest. And yes, the ocean is a bit nippy, but that’s what wetsuits were made for. Surf here — where the expansive sandy beaches are framed by rugged headlands — and you earn bragging rights.  Oregon’s North Coast is also the ideal place to learn to surf, especially for women, because of the programs run by locals dedicated to sharing their love of the sport and the sea.

Who can learn?

If you’re in relatively good physical condition and have advanced beginner swimming skills, you can learn to surf. That means being able to swim two lengths of an Olympic-sized pool and tread water for several minutes.

Who can teach me?

Seaside is lucky to have two surf schools. Oregon Surf Adventures offers an array of lessons: beginner, semi-private, private or private group. It also holds one- and two-day camps for kids and teens (ages 7-17) during the summer months where surfing is combined with marine biology lessons and beach games. Lessons (3 hours) start at $99 per person plus $25 for equipment rental.

While Northwest Women’s Surf Camps specializes in empowering women to surf through day camps and weekenders, it also offers couples weekends and kids group lessons (ages 6-10) on Wednesdays during the summer, plus it’s just added bodyboarding clinics for teens and adults. Day camp surf lessons (9 a.m. to 5 p.m.) start at around $275; discounts are available for early bird registration.

Where do I surf?

Surf instructors will choose the lesson location based on tidal and wind conditions anywhere from Astoria to Manzanita. However, most of the time, lessons are held on Short Sand Beach at Oswald West State Park or near “The Cove” on the south end of Seaside Beach.

Just how cold is it?

Ocean water temperatures usually run about 53 to 58 degrees during the summer months. At Short Sand Beach, prevailing wind and swell conditions make it optimal for teaching. Temperatures can peak in this region (57-64 degrees) in late August but regardless of time of year, you’ll want to invest in good gear. As part of your surf lesson, you’ll be fully geared up in either 4 or 5mm-thick wetsuits, boots, gloves and hood, so don’t let the water temperature hold you back!

and so much more!

Portland to Seaside by Bus

Visiting Seaside without a Car

Learn More
The Iron Horse Comes to Town

A look at the train that connected Seaside to Portland in 1898

Learn More
The War Years in Seaside

Blimp patrols were a common feature in Seaside during World War II.

Learn More
“World’s Largest”

A quick recap of Seaside

Learn More
Oregon Coast: Lodgings with a Tale to Tell

Historic coastal inn in Seaside, Oregon

Learn More
How To Paddle Seaside

Kayaking and paddle boarding options abound in Seaside, Oregon. Find out what you need to know to float the coast....

Learn More
Barefoot beachcombing: a Treat for Your Feet

Historical photo of children doing some barefoot beach combing.

Learn More
Seaside Inside for Kids

Seaside is known for a variety of outdoor activities to enjoy during most of the year and it’s not uncommon to have a 60-plu...

Learn More
View from the Hotel Seaside

A view from the old Hotel Seaside in the mid 1920s

Learn More
We’re Getting Crabby on the Coast

Dungeness crab season on the Oregon coast

Learn More
Biking the N. Coast Mountain Range

Opportunities endless when hopping on two wheels to navigate Seaside area

Learn More
Seaside Downtown Wine Walk
Seaside’s Spring Downtown Wine Walk

A deeper look inside an annual spring event in Seaside

Learn More
Golden Age Arcade

Seaside's classic golden age arcade.

Learn More
Episode Five: The Historic Gilbert District

We explore the Gilbert District in this walk down memory lane

Learn More
Crabbing & Clamming as Seasiders Do

“How have you lived here this long and never crabbed?” That’s the question I kept asking my friends and gracious hosts in Se...

Learn More
A Stop on the Art Walk

Capturing what goes on behind the scenes of a First Saturday Art Walk

Learn More
Summer’s Great, but There’s Nothing Else like Winter in Seaside

When you imagine a classic beach town, you probably picture something similar to Seaside, Oregon. Our town of 6,700 sits less than...

Learn More