2005 Northwest Straits Day Final Report

Prepared by Ian Miller, Surfrider Foundation/Clallam MRC

30 September 2005


The 1st Annual Northwest Straits Day was, by my assessment, a significant success. We were able to:

  1. Exceed our goal of 40 volunteers by approximately 20 people
  2. Collect important data that will help us to identify depository areas along our coast
  3. Collect an estimated 2405 pounds of debris from 6 stretches of Straits of Juan de Fuca coastline
  4. Contribute an estimated 163.5 volunteer hours to our coast

Coastal Stretch specific information is presented below, followed by recommendations for 2006.

Dungeness Spit (and "Bluffs" shoreline)

Booth staffed by David Freed (8-12) and Ed Bowlby (8-12) in the county park parking lot just next to the trailhead.

  1. table and tabletop display, WSU Beach Watchers and Ocean Conservancy literature.
  2. bags, gloves
  3. clif bars
  4. data sheets

Total of 2.5 miles was cleaned. Total of 16 people donating a grand total 48 volunteer hours. Estimated amount of debris collected was 1000 pounds.

Other Observations:


Ediz Hook

Booth staffed 8-12 am by Ian Miller (4 hours) and Sasha Sicks (2 hours) at the Sail and Paddle Park. At the booth we provided:

  1. Tent, table
  2. bags, gloves
  3. coffee, clif bars and water
  4. data sheets
  5. info from Surfrider, OCNMS and Ocean Conservancy

Total Distance cleaned was 7 ¾ mile and a total of 38.5 volunteer hours dedicated.

Estimated amount of debris collected = 975 pounds (plus an estimated 80 pounds at Hollywood Beach)

Other Observations from Ediz Hook include: 

Kayak Section (Crescent Bay to Freshwater Bay)

This section was officially cancelled due to heavy fog on the water. Some debris was collected, however, both the day before and later on Sunday by independent groups. The Olympic Kayak Club, which coordinated this section, will attempt to re-schedule as conditions allow. Reports from those that did get on the water indicate that this is a significant collection area for debris.

Estimated amount of debris collected (and recorded) = 75 pounds

Estimated volunteer-hours contributed = 11 volunteer -hours

Morse Creek

Two volunteers covered approximately one mile of beach (from the 4 mile marker along the ODT, to Bagley Creek), collecting approximately 30 pounds of debris. Observations from the volunteers:

"We were amazed at how little garbage there was. My recollection is

this is not how it usually is (the reason for asking you prior if we could have garbage pickup. It was very apparent that the tide had been very high recently. So for a lot of the debris, it must have ended up somewhere else."


Freshwater Bay

Three volunteers collected a total of 60 pounds of debris along two miles of Freshwater Bay, dedicating a total of 7 volunteer hours.

Observations include:

"I collected about 15 lbs of garbage.  Some big gnarly metal things I had to leave where they were. The most debris was found closest to the boat launch at Freshwater Bay, but there was sort of a steady stream of garbage up along the edge of the bluffs. Most of the garbage was shoreline/recreation oriented - specifically beer cans, pop bottles and snack bags. There was also plenty of fishing related debris: ropes, line, nets, bailers."

"We started collecting at the east end of Place Road out to the dike and along the river.  Then we went west along the bay about 1 mile so I would guess we covered at least 1 1/2 miles."


Clallam Bay

The September 18, 2005 International Coastal Cleanup day, at Clallam Bay/Sekiu, was beautiful (maybe even a little too warm), the Cleanup volunteers were enthused and dedicated, and goals fully realized. We recorded 110 pounds plus approximately 50 pounds unrecorded for a potential total of 160 pounds. Additionally, about 50 pounds of unbagged heavy metal was taken. 43 pounds was taken from shipwreck point alone (about 12 miles west of Clallam Bay), an alternate (if there was time) beach. The additional 50 pounds, or so, of trash that may not have been recorded is strictly an estimate and will be determined more accurately later. Additionally, there was trash to heavy to tote back that was stacked for later pickup (a tire and heavy metal, etc.). So, all and all, it was a good day for the Clallam Bay/Sekiu community and beaches.


"Out of the mouths of babe’s: My grand kids, remarked to their dad as they were picking up the trash, "why would anyone throw garbage onto the beach like this?". I am sure that the next time they think about throwing trash on the ground, they will think twice about doing it, and will save it for the right place.

Clallam Bay/Sekiu beaches are a jewel compared to Shipwreck point, which is, indeed, a wreck. Among other things, it is a privy without privy accommodations. It is a trash dump without trash receptacles. It is a shame to mar this beautiful section of beach with such debris. The beach its self was relatively clean, it was primarily near the 2 pull off points that were particularly blemished, which is the first thing that visitors will observe, unfortunately. I did not use gloves at the Clallam Bay beaches, but I made a special trip back home to get a pair before I started picking up the filth at Shipwreck. The next volunteer package could include a set of nose plugs for this section as well. It would be nice to have a sanican and trash receptacles at this location during the summer months (unlikely but nice).

The section of beach from the Spring tavern to the Coho marina contains interesting remnants of old railroad rails, piping conduits, several railroad car wheels and coupling mechanisms, and some steel cable. I do not think that this type of debris harms the animal/bird life or eco-system, however, it would be interesting to retrieve some of the stuff, for historical reference and/or decorations. I have seen pictures, of the old days, showing railroad trestles for lumber transport in that area."


Ted Muralt 640-0686 ted@clallambay.net


Recommendations for 2006


Coordinator Contacts

Ian Miller, Coordinator 360 808 1103 imiller@surfrider.org

David Freed, Coordinator 360 565 2619

Ted Muralt, Clallam Bay Coordinator 640-0686 ted@clallambay.net

Joan Hauser-Crowe, State Parks, State Coordinator for the International Coast Clean-up

Bruce Monro, Olympic Kayak Club 360 460 3440

Andree Hurley, Washington Kayak Club 360 379 4182