Monday, March 15, 2010

Stormy Days

The Nor'easter of the last few days has been very intense with strong winds and deluges of rain. Branches and trees are down everywhere but nowhere is the damage felt as strongly as along our beaches. Although the outer Cape beaches have probably felt the impact the strongest, many bay side and even south facing beaches have taken big hits as well.

On the outer Cape the erosion has been so severe that most of the stairs leading down to the beaches have been washed away and the dunes so undercut that no one is allowed down on the actual beaches. At high tide, there is no beach. Only what's left of the cliffs and the raging water...this first picture is from Marconi Beach in Wellfleet.
This second shot is from Nauset Light Beach, where the only stairs remaining are the top few that are still hanging on to the platform...
This view from Fort Hill doesn't look very threatening....until you realize there is no marsh and no barrier beach to be seen....all under water!!! Very shocking....
Here's foggy view of what is left of the barrier beach in the distance. You can see the water washing over it and over the marsh (or what used to be the marsh) behind it.
This white water was already past the dunes that used to be there at Coast Guard Beach and slamming against the bushes that are supposed to be upland, not wetland plants....
Storms have always caused upheavals and rearrangements of beach area on the Cape but in my lifetime this seems like one of the most severe ones. We will have to wait until the tides recede and the waves calm down to truly assess the damage....

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