Thor’s Well

Useful Information

Thor’s Well, Oregon, U.S.A. Public Domain.
Location: On the Oregon Pacific coast, 40 km south of Newport on coastal highway 101. Cape Perpetua.
Open: No restrictions.
Fee: free.
Classification: Speleologysea cave Speleologylava tube SpeleologyBlowhole
Light: n/a
Guided tours:
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
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Thor’s Well is sometimes called the sink of the Pacific Ocean. At the coast of Oregon, on top of a rocky platform, which is flooded during high water, lies an almost circular hole. It is not a blow hole, where water from the sea is pressed into a cave and the blown up into the air by the pressure. Actually it looks like the opposite is happening here, the waves crash over the rocks and then vanish into the hole, as if there was a huge cavern below into which the whole ocean could flow wave by wave.

Oregon is famous for lava tubes and sea caves. This is most likely a sea cave below, or probably a lava tube, which is filled by sea water. The form of the cave and the rocks above cause the illusion of water flowing into a sink. The water actually flows back into the sea under water and invisible between two waves. The opening to the surface is too big to build pressure with the wave, but the pul between the waves obviously causes a lower pressure in the cave and the water level inside goes down.