Seaside Stories

Riders of the Storm

March 3, 2013 | by Nate Burke

Feeling the weight of the wind pushing against your body, one is made keenly aware of the swirling powers of the coastal winter weather. There are times during certain gusts when the sky churns with such otherworldly ferocity, that one’s mind turns to Dorothy in her air-born farm house. Storm watching season is nearly over, but the weather still has some moxie left before surrendering to those fresh and sparkling spring days.

I was in Seaside’s estuary at dusk, during that special in-between-time when the day’s stormy weather retires for a moment to observe the ending of the day. The rain had stopped. But the clouds were as colossal and mountainous as dark continents. The sky hung over everything and seemed to dwarf the land beneath it. At this time of day, the coastline is like a stage to observe the power of the atmosphere. Where the storm clouds slumber like black dragons after a meal and the sun makes a theatrical appearance from beneath the dim underbelly of the heavens.

The wind gusts stopped for a moment. The only sound was the velvet lapping of the slack tide on the sands.  The clouds, churning on the horizon, parted, and seemed to breathe fire as the sun slipped through. Then from out of the silence came a sudden uproar. Rising from the tree line, an astonishing mass of gulls – it seemed like hundreds – coiled up to the sky like smoke.  It was a stampede.  With a great pandemonium of whoops and screams, the swarm corkscrewed overhead and up through the storm clouds towards the horizon.  The wind currents suddenly surged up and the dark clouds flexed. The rain started up again. From behind me and far off to my left there was a man standing in the twilight with a black lab.  He laughed, pointing to the mad dash of gulls.  Exhilarated, he shouted to me over the rising wind: “Riders of the storm!”  Equally exhilarated, I laughed my agreement into the growing darkness.

Do you have any storm watching tales?  Please share with us below!

Editor’s Note: Seaside’s estuary, cove, and beachfront are all great places for storm watching. In the surrounding area, Indian Beach and Cape Disappointment also offer some amazing storm watching experiences.

Leave a Reply

and so much more!

A Glimpse of the Turnaround: Circa 1940

Seaside's classic turnaround circa 1940.

Learn More
Views of Tillamook Rock Lighthouse are well within your reach thanks to the adventure of the Tillamook Head Trail just south of Seaside.
How to Get Epic Tillamook Rock Lighthouse Views

Your quest to see Tillamook Rock begins on the south side of Seaside at the end of Sunset Boulevard.

Learn More
Oregon Coast: Lodgings with a Tale to Tell

Historic coastal inn in Seaside, Oregon

Learn More
Insider Tips: Exploring the Prom Like a Local

It’s difficult to imagine Seaside without the historic Promenade, the famous lamp-lined trail that stretches along the sandy bea...

Learn More
A Seagull’s View

Aerial shot of Seaside Oregon from the 1920s

Learn More
Seaside Off The Beaten Path

Think you’ve experienced everything in Seaside? Think again. There are always more spots full of history, beauty and wonder to e...

Learn More
Seaside Lifeguards: A Fond Seasonal Farewell

Can you believe it’s almost Labor Day Weekend? Don’t fret!  We’re still probably in for some dynamic weather throughout Sep...

Learn More
Dedicated to the Promenade

It's been nearly 92 years since the inaguration of Seaside's Promenade

Learn More
Our timeless ocean

Enjoying the ocean can be a timeless endeavor.

Learn More
All About Independence Day 2020 in Seaside

Let’s be clear: July 4th is going to look a little different in Seaside this year. While many of your favorite events had to...

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
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
“Fascinated” on Broadway

Fascination has been a staple in Seaside, Oregon since the 1950s.

Learn More
How to Treasure the Beach

No one owns the Oregon Coast — it belongs to everyone. Thanks to 1967’s landmark Beach Bill, Oregon has some of the most prote...

Learn More
Seaside Nightlife

Above photo: A group enjoys some live music in a photo by Don Frank. Some visitors come to Seaside for the beach, some for the att...

Learn More
Making Seaside Beautiful: Gardens

Seeking help on starting a garden plot sent me in search of Pam Fleming, whose reputation as a resource on Seaside’s Gardens was a bit understated as I was to discover. I met her at the Grand Opening of Back Alley Gardens (find by walking through Natural Nook Florists 734 Broadway).

Learn More
Episode Four: the Seaside Museum & Butterfield Cottage

Audio walking tour of the Seaside Museum & Butterfield Cottage

Learn More