Saturday, December 05, 2009
Behind most of Camano Island's beaches are eroding bluffs that now and then dump sand and gravel onto the back of the beach. Camano's beaches are made of old landslides. But like bluffs all over Puget Sound, every couple hundred feet is owned by someone who loves the beach and the view, but is nervous about their proximity to the edge of the bluff (the very thing that provides them both the beach and the view). Erosion rates are pretty slow on the Sound, however, so most homes won't fall in for centuries, but that is little consolation to someone who had a big chunk collapse last winter.
Seawalls of one form or another can now be found on a third of Puget Sound's beaches and there are many more every year. The effects on our future shoreline of all these walls are going to be very real, but not necessarily immediate and not necessarily the same everywhere. It's too bad we can't bring our great grand kids back from the future to help us explain the problem - they might get more traction than the rest of us!
I swung by the park early Tuesday morning on the way to Port Orchard. They had just wrapped up the remodel project - the bank has been cleaned up and the logs repositioned. The steel anchors are gone and the concrete wings on the outfall were removed. Together, these should address some of the problems the park had been experiencing the last couple of years.
The underlying issues at Narrows Park are an unfortunate function of the original filling of the stream mouth and the construction of the concrete outfall. Maybe someday there will be a chance to restore a more natural stream mouth. I suspect this would lead to a more sustainable shoreline - albeit a more dynamic one (maybe a small spit, rather than an eroding bank). It would still be a great park and a great beach to visit.
Previous Posts: November, 2008 March, 2006