Nye Beach in Newport is a great case study in coastal erosion and landslides. To non-geologists, the only clue besides historical signs and accounts may be the foundation of the condominiums perched on the edge of the bluff at Jumpoff Joe. Geologists, on the other hand, might recognize the characteristic slump topography along the bluffs and the unusual outcrops on the beach below.
Jumpoff Joe refers to a long-gone headland that jutted out to sea just north of the relic condos. Historic photos show a major projection complete with a large arch. Apparently it was a significant impediment to travel along the beach, requiring people to climb over and jump down somewhere on the other side.
Paul Komar dedicates an entire chapter to Jumpoff Joe in The Pacific Northwest Coast (Duke 1997). One of the lessons of Jumpoff Joe is a simple reminder of the dynamic nature of coastlines and our willingness to overlook this when it comes to developing coastal property. A corollary lesson is that any developer can find a consultant wiling to write a favorable report, no matter how evident the underlying problems.
For those interested in the history of Nye Beach and Jumpoff Joe, Wikipedia is a good starting point (Wikipedia is often a good starting point, but sometimes not a good place to stop). There are also some nice historical images of the 19th century coastline and of the early 20th century buildings if you dig a little deeper (Google's image search is a helpful tool).