Photo above and text below from a February 26, 2023 blog.

Is there an attitude related to climate change/sea level rise that is used as an excuse to back away from maintaining the shore?

Public access for beach walkers at Damon Point has been on my mind. For a town that promotes visitors, tourism and good times at the beach, things are piss poor over at Damon Point.

Today, beach walkers moving toward the water from the parking area at Damon Point are channeled to a choice between an eroded/unsafe former road drop-off and private property that is posted, telling walkers that they are not welcome. WTF?

Image above taken earlier this winter.

KOSW recently discussed some erosion issues at Damon Point.

Here is the link – listen here.

It looks like there is no sense of urgency in making improvements here.

Recently blogged about it:

Damon Point Beach Access


Damon Point – Washington Trails Association

Trip Reports

Dec. 31, 2022

“Getting access to Damon Point was difficult because of a wash out. You either have to climb over the jetty or walk through the RV park. There is no trail from the parking lot to the beaches along the point.”

Aug. 11, 2022

The only trail leading to Damon Point now has a sign that says private property. The public is no longer allowed to access it You can cross over the rocks on the jetty. At low tide this is not terribly difficult, you just need to be careful However at high tide it becomes more difficult. In the winter with high tides and wind it could become dangerous. Please take care crossing it.”

Two photos below: Nov 12, 2023

Other Parts of the Beach are Maintained Year Round

Think of beach entry points at Chance A La Mer, Pacific Blvd, Ocean Lake Way and Taurus Blvd.

The black top ends and the sand is cleared out of the way on a routine basis. Concerns Re: tsunami zone, global warming, sea level rise, climate crisis, king tides, coastal erosion, El Niño/La Niña and winter storms do not get in the way of keeping things maintained between the blacktop and the beach. Thanks go out to the people who do this work. We appreciate it.

Now in the news:

Part one of two in a series:

The Daily World November 1, 2023

Shoreline at full bore: Ocean Shores embarks on effort to save south end

“Read said saltwater is most likely to encroach in two areas: the Damon Point State Park trailhead near the east end of the road, or a few hundred yards to the west at a smaller trail access point. Several times already this year, saltwater has pushed up that trail and into a ditch on the other side of the dunes, which feeds the southern end of the Ocean Shores freshwater canal and lake system.”

No longer here?

My understanding is that there is no longer any state park at Damon Point. Why did WA State Parks let the property go?

Trailhead? Trailheads are attached to trails. Where is the State Park trail out at Damon Point?

Photo below: Nov 12, 2023 – No mention of a State Park

Looks like WA DNR, at some time in the past, took over what once was Damon Point State Park.

From Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR)

Damon Point was once Protection Island, a sandy shoal at the mouth of Grays Harbor, separated from the town of Ocean Shores by a channel of water.”

“During this period, Damon Point was a state park, with a paved road extending 2 miles out to the end of the spit.”

“Damon Point was the resting place of the SS Catala, originally recommissioned as a floating hotel in Seattle for the 1962 World’s Fair. It was moved to Ocean Shores and eventually ran aground at Damon Point, greatly contributing to accretion of sediments. The wreckage was finally removed in 2007.”

Ran aground? Was Catala underway prior to beaching?

Feb 5, 2023 blog:

How Was SS Catala Moored at Ocean Shores?


Tripadvisor October 5, 2012

“One really interesting place to visit in Ocean Shores is Damon Point — a spit of land a half-mile wide and a mile long jutting out into the sea. It was Damon Point State Park until a storm washed away all the facilities — access road, parking area and vault toilet — and now there is no park.”

Aug, 2022

Damon point no longer has easy access to the beach. The trail that the public previously used now has the sign that says private property. You can cross the rocks over the jetty which at low tide is not too difficult. however at high tide this becomes more difficult and in the winter could be dangerous.”

Damon Point was once a state park. Why is it no longer a state park? Again: Is there an attitude related to climate change/sea level rise that is used as an excuse to back away from maintaining the shore?

Part two of two in a series:

In search for stronger shoreline, Ocean Shores can look to coastal neighbors

A 100-year old jetty used to protect Ocean Shores. Can new technologies save its south end?

The Daily World November 2, 2023

“Today, a large remnant of that jetty, roughly 10,000 feet angling to the northeast from the peninsula’s western hoof to the Damon Point parking lot, lies stranded and submerged in the bay, battered by 100 years of bashing saltwater, waves and, once, the impact of an errant fishing boat.”

Previous jetty installed 100 years ago. If it was important then, why not now?

“While no environmental factor alone can fully explain the widening gap between the relic rocks and receding beaches, the shoreline owes much of its shape to the jetties protruding into the Pacific at Grays Harbor’s entrance.”

Man made structures/one or more jetties installed at the entrance to Grays Harbor have altered the natural migration of sand, not coastal erosion/climate crisis/sea level rise?

“The erosion that you see in Oyhut Bay, and basically the development and expansion of the bay, is part of a very long-term process of the inlet entrance evolving in response to the construction of jetties,” said George Kaminsky, a coastal erosion expert with the Washington state Department of Ecology.

“Another important partner, Martin said, will be the Quinault Indian Nation, which owns the Quinault Marina and RV Park on the east side of the bay.”

“Are we dealing with a natural process? Are we dealing with a partly man made process? Or a combination of both?”

No longer Here – Ferry to Westport

“Sadly, the ferry service shut down in 2008, but not due to lack of popularity. While the ferry service had seen closures in previous years, the service would always pick back up and be celebrated by residents and visitors alike. Sadly, after too much sand and silt built up around the Ocean Shores marina, the El Matador was forced to cancel trips across the harbor. What was once a family-friendly boating experience and adventure across the harbor is now relegated to fond memories.”

Again: Is there an attitude related to climate change/sea level rise that is used as an excuse to back away from maintaining the shore?

Imagine telling the fishing boat captains over at Westport that their access to a 100 year old armor-plated harbor was going to be let go because too much sand and silt built up around the marina. Imagine letting the people of Westport know there will be no more lodging out there, shops, restaurants, etc.

A 100-year old jetty used to protect Ocean Shores. Can new technologies save its south end?

Any federal money for ports and coastal improvement?

Plenty of cash for Ukraine/undeclared/unwon wars and here is what you get back home:

$6.3 million in federal cash for a used hotel.

Any questions from newspeople?

December 8, 2022 The Daily World

Dept. of Ag invests $6.3M to purchase Ocean Shores hotel

$6.3 million “to fund the acquisition of an existing hotel. Marathon Enterprises Inc. is located in Ocean Shores, Grays Harbor County, Washington. The project is expected to result in saving eight jobs and creating one full time job.”

Zero questions from small or large newspapers. Zero questions from TV newspeople.


Better ideas for local federal funding:

Quinault Marina & RV Resort

Get the ferry to Westport going again.

Rehab of the marina would attract sport fishermen for launching and mooring of boats. Set up a place for fish and chips, a pub with a view, bait and tackle/boating store, a cocktail lounge, restaurant, etc. Use some imagination and get it going.

Ports and coastal improvement:

Oct. 9, 2020 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Headquarters Website

About the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

“One of the Seattle District’s primary missions is to maintain the navigation channels and harbors in the Pacific Northwest. Maintenance and navigation dredging is done frequently in harbor areas, ports and marinas. A significant component of Washington’s economy depends on navigation and commerce, which in turn depends on dredging navigation channels.”

Other than federal funding, go with cooperative efforts, negotiations with the tribe and creative thinking here. City leaders, volunteer work parties, local businesses who may donate trucks and materials, landscaping resources, etc. Offer to create some sort of access trail with a fence, plantings, trash cans, etc. Make an offer to the tribe that can help to improve the situation.

Maybe efforts are already in the works to make improvements. Thanks to those who may be involved.

Possibly of interest:

Room For Improvement – 98569

Damon Point Beach Access

Federal Cash For The Coast – 98569

Ocean Shores Crosswalks