Saturday, September 20, 2008


Yeah, I know I've been a blog-slacker. I've actually had something written but it was a rant and I really hate ranting. I'm saving it till the subject comes up again. I'm sure it will.

I took part in my second Coast Cleanup today. It seems I usually find out about it AFTER the fact so I've begun marking the third Saturday of September on my new calendar. I often collect trash whenever I walk the beach but it's nice to be out there with a group with the same purpose and an official tally sheet. I didn't know where to go to find a group. but found a listing of dumpster sites donated by Les Schwab on the Northcoast Environment Center website. I took a chance and headed to Power Poles on the North Spit and found a crew there, passing out collection bags, tally sheets and rubber gloves.

It always seems to me that the Saturday following the Fourth of July would be a good time for the annual cleaning of the coast since days before and weeks after Independence Day, you will find remains of holiday explosives. I'm guessing, however, that September was chosen for a reason. The seasonal high tides bring on a productive flushing of the ocean, as Mother Nature regurgitates on shore the remnants of the meals she has ingested, thanks to slovenly humans.

Possibly because this beach is more a surf spot and less a party spot, I didn't find a lot of party trash though I talked to one girl who trudged up about the same time I did and her bag most definitely contained cans and bottles. I took advantage of the morning and started my walk at the water line. The tides have been high of late and there were more treasures to be found than normal for that stretch of beach. Of course, I also collected flotsam ... or is it jetsam? Most of what I collected was small so my bag didn't fill quickly. Pieces of nylon rope, a few shotgun shells, cups and straws (I HATE plastic straws). I contented myself knowing that these items would not return to the sea to be eaten by some unsuspecting creature. I actually found quite a lot of rope, including this coil, covered with barnacles from its time in the brine. Likely it had been connected to the remains of a crab pot collected by another team I met. What I didn't find was cigarette butts. Very surprising, though I suppose the aforementioned high tides may have already collected the soggy filters and floated them out on the tide. I'm guessing there has been some churning going on in the depths. A car frame surfaced that I was told shows up when tides are high. It would take a tractor to pull it up since it is upside down and hopefully someone so equipped will do that. Also found, the carcass of a sunfish. I left my lovely toes in the shot to give you an idea of it's size. It was a ways up the beach so the water has been carrying a lot of weight.I was rewarded with some beach treasures. A few nice chunks of agate and jasper. Four sand dollars, intact if not perfect and a wadded up dollar bill. That makes five bucks, right?Following my really long walk on the beach (I always forget to factor in the return trip when I stroll), I headed to the North Country Fair for some sun, a brew, the scent of patchouli and some Christmas shopping. All in all, a perfectly Humboldt day.

Tomorrow? The Bloggers Picnic.


Carol said...

That does make five dollars, although the sand dollars may acutally worth more.

Carol said...

Sorry for my horrible spelling this morning. . . the sand dollars may actually be worth more. Whew!

Indie said...

My friend went to a coastal cleanup that morning, probably the same one. She really felt great about a couple of hours work.