The Pacific Northwest Coast: Living with the Shores of Oregon and Washington

Front Cover
Duke University Press, 1997 - History - 195 pages
0 Reviews
While the coast of the Pacific Northwest becomes populated with houses, condominiums, motels, and restaurants, its beaches and cliffs continue to be altered by ocean currents and winter storms. A companion volume to Living with the Shore of Puget Sound and the Georgia Strait, The Pacific Northwest Coast serves as a source of information about the coast of the Pacific Northwest, its geological setting, the natural responses of beaches and cliffs to ocean processes, and the ever-present problem of erosion. In this guide, Paul D. Komar, one of the nations leading coastal oceanographers, examines the lessons taught by ages of geological and cultural history. With explanations of the areas geological evolution, including natural shoreline erosion and sea-cliff landsliding, Komar details human interaction with the coast: erosion caused by early settlers, the development and destruction of Bayocean Spit, the disastrous effects caused by the 19821983 El Ni-o, and the notorious failure of a construction project on the picturesquebut unstablebluffs at Jump-Off Joe. Emphasizing the actual and potential harm to human projects and to the natural heritage of the coast, Komar provides the knowledge necessary for finding a safe home near the shore while preserving the beauty that draws us to it. Calling for changes in shoreline management policies and in attitudes toward development, this book will inform and assist inhabitants of the Pacific Northwest and the general public who seek to preserve this regions natural heritage.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 67 - A dreadfully fatal intermittent ferer broke out in the lower parts of this river about eleven weeks ago, which has depopulated the country. Villages, which had afforded -from one to two hundred effective warriors, are totally gone ; not a soul remains ! The houses are empty, and flocks of famished dogs are howling about, while the dead bodies lie strewed in every direction on the sands of the river.
Page 66 - Showerey wet and disagreeable. we would have Spent this day the nativity of Christ in feasting, had we any thing either to raise our Sperits or even gratify our appetites, our Diner concisted of pore Elk, so much Spoiled that we eate it thro
Page 68 - ... badly wounded. On the part of the white men, not even the slightest wound was received. The houses of the Indians, with but one exception, were fired and entirely destroyed. Thus was committed a massacre too inhuman to be readily believed. Now for my examination of this horrid affair.
Page 118 - Associated with this warm water movement is a wave-like bulge in sea level that travels eastward along the equator. The Coriolis force, which results from the rotation of the Earth on its axis, causes currents to turn to the right in the northern hemisphere and to the left in the southern hemisphere. Since this released water during El Nino flows predominantly eastward along the equator, the Coriolis force acts to confine the wave to the equatorial zone, constantly turning it in toward the equator....
Page 65 - The sea had now changed from its natural, to river coloured water; the probable consequence of some streams falling into the bay, or into the ocean to the north of it, through the low land. Not considering this opening worthy of more attention, I continued our pursuit to the NW being desirous to embrace the advantages of the prevailing breeze and pleasant weather, so favorable to our examination of the coast, which now took a direction N.
Page 118 - ... water movement is a wave-like bulge in sea level that travels eastward along the equator. The Coriolis force, which results from the rotation of the Earth on its axis, causes currents to turn to the right in the northern hemisphere and to the left in the southern hemisphere. Since this released water during El Nino flows predominantly eastward along the equator, the Coriolis force acts to confine the wave to the equatorial zone, constantly turning it in toward the equator. This prevents the dissipation...
Page 121 - Nino at the tide-gauge in Yaquina Bay, on the mid-Oregon coast, demonstrated that water levels reached a maximum during February 1983, nearly 60 cm higher than the mean water surface in May 1982, nine months earlier (Huyer et al., 1983; Komar, 1986). This change in part reflects the normal seasonal cycle of sea levels produced by parallel variations in atmospheric pressures and water temperatures. However, the 1982-83 sea levels were exceptional, reaching some 10 to 20 cm higher than maxima found...
Page 121 - ... 1983; Komar, 1986). This change in part reflects the normal seasonal cycle of sea levels produced by parallel variations in atmospheric pressures and water temperatures. However, the 1982-83 sea levels were exceptional, reaching some 10 to 20 cm higher than maxima found in other years, about 35 cm above the average winter level. Most of this unusually high sea level can be attributed to the effects of a coastally-trapped sea-level wave associated with the 1982-83 El Nino. Similar extreme sea...
Page 67 - A dreadfully fatal intermittent fever broke out in the lower parts of this river [Columbia] about 11 weeks ago, which has depopulated the country. Villages, which had afforded from one to two hundred effective warriors, are totally gone; not a soul remains.
Page 32 - ... sources during low stands of sea level thousands of years ago, rather than more recent contributions from local rivers. In terms of sediment budgets, it appears that the estuaries are more significant as sinks (debits in the budgets), in that beach sand is carried by tidal currents into the estuaries. The one clear exception is the Columbia River which transports more than 100 times as much sand as the next largest river (the Umpqua), and on the order of 1 ,000 times as much sand as the SAND...

About the author (1997)

Paul D. Komar is Professor of Oceanography at Oregon State University. He is the author of Beach Processes and Sedimentation and the editor of Handbook of Coastal Processes and Erosion.

Bibliographic information