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Assuming you have the tide timing and flow figured out, remember that both the north and south jetties extend well beyond the visible tips. The CG has moved the channel marker buoys and suggests approaching from the south, staying near to the green can and staying towards the south side of the bar (but not too close). If conditions are good, there won't be much trouble on the incoming tides.
 

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While the buoy's have been moved to the south, I'd pay close attention to the water around the green can. It can be very nasty at times.

We generally run in and out on the north side as we typically have a smoother ride.
 

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The change in location of the cans was a direct response to local commercial/charters telling the CG where the safest place to run the bar was.

The Tillamook bar is broken up into a number of different sections. Inside the tips, the middle grounds which runs from the tips out about 1/2 mile, the North Hole, and the South Hole.

For many years the common theme in the charter and commercial fleet has been to get out and off the bar as quick as possible. This led to the "South Hole" running of the bar. As noted, the "South Hole" is small and tight. You end up skirting the submerged tip of the South Jetty and basically heading SSW toward the next can. The idea is that you are getting off the shallow area of the bar as quick as possible, and stay away from the middle grounds where shoaling takes place.

The North Hole as noted by Beer Waggin is run often and more often than not appears flat. The only issue with the North Hole is that sneaker waves appear there and can catch you unaware. With swell out of the NW the first place a overly large swell hits is on the North hole. I have been there when it was completely flat, and out of nowhere our charter boat was surfing down a wave about to break. Now, power applied to sport boats would probably lessen this issue as most could outrun the speed of the wave...not so in a charter boat. It is certainly a surprise to see a wave hump up and get ready to break where it was just flat a few moments before.

For the south hole most waves are breaking or have broken by the time they get there. They have to come across the shallow water in the middle grounds before they get to the south hole. When you are exiting, you have a straight shot run to deeper water on the south, and waves that have not broken yet are most likely not going to start as the depth increases. As noted, the issue is the submerged tip of the S. Jetty. With a swell out of the West, the waves still cross shoaling in the middle grounds, but not as much as NW. SW swell and you can experience the same issue as the NW swell in the North hole.

Entering the bar via the South Hole gives you an opportunity to sit on the South side of the South Jetty in relatively deep water and look at the bar. You can time the wave series and decide to cross in between sets. On rough days it was not uncommon to sit with other charter boats on the south side and cross one by one. The CG would provide a seaward escort in an attempt to break any waves that would be rolling off the middle grounds.

Running straight out puts you through the middle grounds which is the shallowest portion of the bar for the longest period of time. Running straight in also puts you in the most hazardous area for the longest period of time.

It was common occurrence for us fishing North of the bar to run the South hole, then run West past the middle grounds, then turn North and proceed that direction until we got where we were going.

I'd highly recommend anyone that has not run this bar to go out to Barview on the North Jetty and spend some time watching boats cross the bar. We used to go there just about every morning there was a decent swell and look at the bar before we untied the boats and headed that direction.

The cans are there for a reason. Some people don't like their placement, but they seem to be right on the money to me. I run out of Tillamook rarely now, not daily, so this is just my take from the years I spent there working on boats. I do cross the bar every year and currently nothing I have seen would change my opinion on the crossing.
 

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:agree::yeahthat:, 'course I ain't no 36' bertrand either...did manage to surf a wave in my 15' about 8 years ago, caught a breaking nw swell in the middle ground on a relatively flat day...:passout:the coastie in the tower was impressed...I wasn't, a little too much overconfidence on my part...sea lesson #645 maintain a sharp lookout and keep your pace with the back of the first wave...you all know that, but that was the day I really lern'd it!:bowdown:
 

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Here's my concern for Saturday... With High tide right around Noon, that current will probably start running about 1:00PM. So knowing my boat, and that fact that I like to avoid ebbing bars as much as possible, I will be planning on crossing back in by 1PM at the latest. A full 3 hours before the fish check in completes.

I was just curious what other skipper's thoughts are on this? A lot of you have a much larger boat than me, so you're probably not sweating it too much. But is there anyone else out there concerned that it might be ebbing a little too much?

(Granted it is only a 2.6' exchange)

--Ska
 
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