Princess Ewauna - The Bandon Face Rock


Driving along the Pacific Coast Highway brought us to many magnificent views of the Pacific Ocean. In the movie The Shawshank Redemption, one of the characters Red (Morgan Freeman) after getting out from prison and going to visit his friend had said: "I hope the Pacific is as blue as it has been in my dreams." - After that they showed Tim Robbins' character Andy Dufresne driving along The Big Sur, in his convertible, and they showed the Pacific Ocean, in all its glory, and it was, indeed, blue and vast. Ever since then, I've been wanting to drive the Big Sur and the entire Pacific Coast Highway. I got my chance, and I can say that its everything I imagined it to be. I didn't have a convertible, but with the windows down and the music blasting, it was pretty damn good. Having been in the US east coast majority of my time, its a different feeling than looking into the Atlantic Ocean in the east coast - I really can't explain it - it was much more spiritual - or maybe because I was on vacation. Its probably that. One of the place along this route is the Face Rock, in Bandon, Oregon. This is a bizarre attraction along this otherwise spiritual drive - it is basically a face, looming out of the ocean. There is no obvious way to the beach, but there is a well-kept secret way. In support of local preservation, I am choosing to keep it secret. However, the view is much better from the top, near the actual viewpoint in the park. There is a legend behind this that the locals believe:

Many, many years ago, the legend begins, Chief Siskiyou from the far mountains traveled with his family and other clansmen to the coast to trade goods with the four tribes who lived by the sea they called Wecoma.

In his honor, the four chiefs planned the greatest feast in all memory. They roasted bear,salmon, elk, and deer. Huge quantities of clams and mussels were steamed. Cedar back trays were filled with honey and red and blue huckleberries.

It was feared that Seatka, the evil spirit who lived in the sea, might cause trouble for the people and their guests. Armed warriors stood guard on the high bluffs.

The sea enchanted Princess Ewauna, the beautiful daughter of Chief Siskiyou. After the feast, when the people were sleeping, she slipped away from camp, carrying a basket with her cat and kittens nestled inside, and followed by her faithful dog.

The moon was full and the Wecoma ran silver. Ewuana, who did not fear Seatka, swam in the sea, farther and farther from shore. The dog barked a warning but it was too late.

The evil Seatka had captured the beautiful princess. The dog carrying the basket of kittens swam to his mistress and buried his teeth in the hand of Seatka.

Howling, he shook off the dog and threw the cats into the sea. Seatka tried to make Ewauna look into his eyes, but she refused to look away from the great, round moon.

When her father awoke, he raised the alarm. Everyone rushed to the shore of Wecoma. There they saw the lovely face of Princess Ewauna gazing skyward. Her dog was on the beach howling for the princess, and the cat and kittens were in the sea. In time, they all turned to stone, frozen forever, as they were that long ago dawn.