Oregon’s Minimalistic World Records

When you think about world records, you probably think about the fastest, tallest, biggest, … stuff in history mankind built or did. But how about small and tiny things? Usually, the small stuff is not that interesting compared to big boys toys. We all probably like the world’s largest commercial jet airliner, the Airbus A380.

Throughout my travels, I found three minimalistic world records in Oregon, which are impressive and never thought about having a world record for these kinds of things.

World’s smallest Park – Mill Ends Park in Portland

In 1948 the site of the park, the median strip of SW Naito Parkway, was intended to be a site for a light pole. When weed started to sprout out of the opening and the light pole failed to appear, Dick Fagan planted flowers in the hole and called it Mill Ends Park. Fagan, a columnist for the Oregon Journal, named it after his column in the paper, “Mill Ends”.

The park was dedicated on St. Patrick’s Day, 1948 and was named an official city park in 1976. The park has a total area of 452 sq in (0.292 m²). It is the smallest park in the world, according to the Guinness Book of Records, which first granted it this recognition in 1971.

Mill Ends Park

Mill Ends Park

World’s smallest natural navigable harbor – Depoe Bay Harbor

Yes, there are smaller harbors than this one in the world. The big difference is that this is the world’s smallest natural navigable harbor. Especially during stormy days, the approach into the harbor can be a challenge. On a nice and sunny day, it’s a piece of cake to get in and out of the harbor. Depoe Bay is one of the youngest towns on the Oregon coast. It got started in 1927 when the bridge and highway were built. In the summer time, the small town is crowded with tourists. The harbor as a Guinness World Record is not the reason for all the tourists, it’s mainly fishing, whale watching and the Sprouting Horn. The Sprouting horn is a two-foot-wide underwater cave that channels incoming breakers straight up. In heavy surf it can soak the sidewalk on Highway 101.

 

Fifteen miles up north on Highway 101 you find the world’s shortest river.  

World’s shortest River – D River in Lincoln City

When you pass through Lincoln City, you will see a sign with “World’s shortest – D River”. With 440 feet (130 m) it was listed in the Guinness World Records as the world’s shortest river. This title was lost in 1989 when Guinness World Records named the Roe River in Montana as the world’s shortest river.

Lincoln City tried to reclaim the title and submitted a new measurement of about 120 feet (37 m) marked at “extreme high tide”. Starting in 2006, the Guinness Book of World Records doesn’t list a category for shortest river anymore.

D River flows from Devils Lake, under highway 101, and into the Pacific Ocean. Besides being the shortest river, it is also the river with the shortest name.

What world records did you see on your travels? Let me know in the comments.

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