Scenes From the Oregon Shore, 2021

Selecting favorite photographs isn’t easy, but here are a few essential scenes from central and northern Oregon’s exposed, outer shores.

April 25 (previously appeared in Focusing on the Details: Thatched Barnacles)

Intimate view in a niche in a mussel bed niche
Mature thatched barnacles

April 28 (previously appeared in A Quiet Moment in the Ulva Garden)

Sunrise on the Ulva rock garden (foreground); beyond tidepoos and large rocks jutting skyward; beyond that the open see and a lightly colored horizon
The soft kiss of dawn

April 28

Corallina and a sprig of Osmundea

April 28

Northern kelp crab, Pugettia producta

May 25 (previously appeared in Keep Walking, On the Northern Oregon Shore)

A strange sandstone tower-like outcrop jutting out of beach sand; headland in the distance, surf zone to the right, cliffs to the left
Headlands exert a gravity all their own (an odd tower jutting up out of the sand has a similar effect)

May 26 (mussels, left); May 27 (nudibranch, right)

June 25

Moody shore

July 22

A meeting of sister ecosystems

July 22

Surfgrass and beyond

July 22

Because there’s never too much Pisaster

July 23

And if my favorite is a pair of Ligia, what of it?

September 26

Purple urchins

This selection ignores my favorite sea wrack scenes, which can be found at Wrack Line Retrospective, 2021.

Here’s to bountiful upwellings in the year ahead!

Favorite Images of 2021


  1. Wonderful choices Steve – you’re truly shown us the beauty of this environment throughout the year. Impossible to choose a favorite but somehow your sister ecosystems stole my heart! Happiest of New Years to you and yours.

  2. Thanks for sharing your images from the shore from one of your Oregon neighbors, Steve! I liked the third image landscape and the close up of the sea urchins.

    1. Hi! Forgive me for letting your nice comment slip by me. I apologize. And thank you very much for taking a stab at picking a favorite. And I’m with you, the ones the caught your eye are pretty. The water in that tidepool was so clear and still, the urchins just popped in that light. I wish you a wonderful and happy new year.

  3. Just found this site. Wow! Love your photographic documentary of the coast. I examine sands under the microscope and enjoy discovering and studying the carbonate remains of the marine life– and trying to figure out what’s what. Great to see the macro photos. Recently, I’ve picked apart the sand from Otter Rock.

    1. Hi there, Kate. Otter Rock! I’m familiar with the location, but I confess I haven’t stopped in for a closed look. I’d love to check out the tide pools in that area sometime. And checking out sand for marine sea life remains! I haven’t ventured into that world, but it sounds interesting. (I do think sometimes about the small organisms that live in beach sands.) As you probably imagine from my posts, I don’t have a dissecting scope. It’s something I daydream about. Have you posted any images of your work with sand? And thanks for your nice note.- Steve

    1. Hi Sylvia, Thanks for taking a look at my favorites and for trying your hand at picking a favorite. You’re not alone picking that one. I wish you the best in the New Year.- Steve

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