Thursday, March 5, 2015

Second Beach

The view from Second Beach, Olympic National Park, this weekend

Had the opportunity to visit Second Beach over the weekend, and survey First Beach at La Push a few days ago with students from the Quileute Tribal School and Forks High School. Its been a beautiful stretch of weather, and the coast is the right place to be at times like these.

A bedrock exposure at the south end of Second Beach, completely coated with Aggregating Anenomes (Anthopleura elegantissima)

A few observations from Second Beach...

I was struck at Second Beach by the volume of the looked like the beach had accreted substantially since the last time I was there a few months back. Even at a mid-level tide the beach was broader than I remembered:

On the upper beach, many large logs were partially buried by sand:

Large logs at Second Beach partially buried by fresh deposition

Is this a localized episode of accretion at Second Beach? Or is there something about the weather recently (relatively mild, small waves, etc.) that has pushed sand up into the intertidal? I'm curious now to work up our data from First Beach, and see how the profiles look...


gosink said...

Hi Ian,

I just hiked up the coast from Rialto to Shi Shi. I haven't gone that way in years, but it seemed like there were a lot of hillsides slumping down into the ocean. Is that normal - ie have I just forgotten how things used to be.

Also (related), I go out with a bunch of friends every Memorial Day weekend to Shi Shi and it seems like the beaches and driftwood are getting less and less every year. Is this my imagination? Couldn't immediately find if you blogged about this before. Thanks!!

Ian Miller said...

well sorry I missed this comment! the hillside slumping is very normal, especially on the coast. It is a geologically messy area, and slope failures are common. In regards to wood, thats a more difficult question. We know that wood is very dynamic on the coast, but we don't know what the trends looks like (i.e. is there less wood over time, or more).