Friday, June 05, 2009
I walked in from the gate, since the park was still a couple of hours from opening. An early morning walk on the beach was partial compensation for the third all-day meeting in Olympia in as many days.
The beaches at the park are pretty silty - reflecting an abundance of fine sediment from unstable bluffs to the north and the lack of sufficient wave action to efficiently remove the fines from the coarser beach material.
The bluffs are heavily forested right down to the water, and though most of the big trees were probably taken out 130 years ago, there were still several large firs along the shore. The head of Frye Cove is a small estuary - with a muddy spit sheltering it from the rest of Eld Inlet.
The park recently installed a "soft" structure of cobble and anchored logs to deal with erosion at the park's primary beach access. I'm still a bit puzzled by these efforts - the intentions are good, but they seem a bit like a solution in search of a problem. What if you just excavated the bank back a little farther, planted the heck out of it, and built a simple low-impact wooden stairway. And left out all the cobble and the big stainless chains - which are neither native to this setting nor particularly "soft."