Oregon coast sailing
Hey Mike, I can toss a bit of info into this. The Pacific coast is about as unprotected a bit of water as you can find and unless there is a good sized bay, its not really a good place to learn boating. All of the exits to the ocean out here have bar's that can become quite nasty rather quickly and what started out as a nice jaunt in a calm ocean, can become a struggle getting back home against a stiff current and steep waves, its the nature of a coastal bar into prevailing swells.
Its rare to see any small sailboats out here for good reason, hull speed on a small boat is frequently less than the Ebb current heading over the bar.
You may want to look into a sailing school on the Columbia near Portland, the current there is usually 1-2 knots and decent wind in the afternoon for most of summer. The Seattle area is good too, but a bit of a drive for you.
Captain Ron Micjan
SeaTow Lower Columbia River