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home | Locations | FACTS & FIGURES FOR OREGON COAST--CA . . .

Ivan Gillis
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Oregon Coast

Cannon Beach, Oregon


Cannon Beach, a city in Clatsop County, Oregon, United States, is an affluent tourist resort destination. Because of its proximity to Portland, Oregon, it is particularly known as a weekend getaway spot for Portlanders.


According to Oregon Geographic Names, Cannon Beach was originally named Ecola, after the creek that empties into the Pacific Ocean to the north of the city. In 1922 it was renamed Cannon Beach (after the name of the beach that extends south of Ecola creek for eight miles, ending at Arch Cape) at the insistence of the Post Office Department because the name was frequently confused with Eola.


The first recorded European American journey to this area was made by William Clark, one of the leaders of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, in January, 1805, when a group of Native Americans invited him to view a beached whale at the nearby beach. The expedition was headquartered at the time near the mouth of the Columbia River. Curiosity got the better of him and Clark had to journey south over Tillamook Head, which he described in his journal as "the Steepest worst and highest mountain I ever assended [sic]&" to get there.  From a place near the western cliffs of the headland he saw "& the grandest and most pleasing prospects which my eyes ever surveyed, in front of a boundless Ocean&" That viewpoint is now called Clark's Point of View and can be accessed by a hiking trail which leaves Indian Beach within the Ecola State Park.


In 1846, a cannon from the US Navy schooner Shark washed ashore just north of Arch Cape, a few miles to the south of Elk Creek, the current Cannon Beach. The schooner was wrecked while attempting to cross the Columbia Bar, also known as the "Graveyard of the Pacific" because of the danger of the bar. The townspeople of Elk Creek renamed their town after the cannon. The cannon is in the town's museum and a replica of it can be seen alongside U.S. Route 101


Highway 101 formerly ran through Cannon Beach. In 1964, a tsunami generated by the Good Friday Earthquake came ashore along the coast of the Pacific Northwest. While it did not destroy the town of Cannon Beach, it did inundate parts of it and washed away the highway bridge at the north side of town. The town was thus isolated from highway and to attract visitors they decided to hold a sandcastle contest-an event which is repeated annually to this day. Cannon Beach is now an affluent resort town.


Cannon Beach is recognized by its well-known landmark, Haystack Rock, located to the southwest of downtown Cannon Beach, near Tolovana Park. This igneous rock has an elevation of 235 feet, and is often accessible at low tide, especially in the summertime. There is a small cave system that penetrates the rock and can be seen from the coastline. The rock is also protected as a marine sanctuary, Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge.


Near Haystack Rock are the Needles, two tall rocks rising straight out of the water.




Population (year 2000): 1,588. Estimated population in July 2006: 1,720 (+8.3% change)


Males: 738 


Females: 850 



Median Age--43.7 Years

Ancestries: German (21.6%), English (16.0%), Irish (15.5%), French (5.9%), Norwegian (5.3%), Swedish (5.0%).

Races in Cannon Beach:

  • White Non-Hispanic (87.1%)
  • Hispanic (10.5%)
  • Other race (3.3%)
  • Two or more races (2.8%)
  • American Indian (2.4%)

(Total can be greater than 100% because Hispanics could be counted in other races)

Income & Housing Costs Numbers:

Estimated median household income in 2005: $38,100 (it was $39,271 in 2000)

Cannon Beach 





Estimated median house/condo value in 2005: $302,700 (it was $254,500 in 2000)

Cannon Beach 





Elevation: 100 feet

Land area: 1.49 square miles.

Population density--1143 per square mile--low.

In-Depth Facts and Figures as listed below, plus other information:

·        Climate Charts

1.      Average Temperature

2.      Precipitation (Rain)

3.      Humidity

4.      Wind Speed (MPH)

5.      Snowfall

6.      Sunshine

7.      Cloudy Days

·        Tornado Activity History

·        Hospitals & Medical

·        Airports

·        Colleges/Universities

·        High Schools

·        Locations of Interest

·        Shopping Centers

·        Churches

·        Lakes/Streams/Rivers/Creeks/Parks

·        Tourist Attractions

·        Banks

·        Housing Costs Information

·        Crime Statistics

·        Radio Stations AM/FM

·        TV Broadcast Stations

·        Discussion Forums


For the above information and photos, click this link:


Total Tax Burden--Data for Calculation


See article on Ashland, Oregon.

Cost of Living Calculators Links:

Wikipedia Information Link:,_Oregon







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