Wednesday, February 06, 2013

South Whidbey State Park

Another State Park -- another deep-seated landslide.  I used Camano Island State Park to illustrate this symbiotic relationship in November (Gravel Beach:  Camano Island SP), but much the same applies to this park on the west side of Whidbey Island.

The trail down to the beach at South Whidbey SP traverses the headscarp of the main slide, then winds through hummocks and around sag ponds, before arriving at the lower bluff, which is where the recent movement has been and which has taken some of the trail along with it.


This is a wonderful stretch of beach. Bush Point lies to the south, Lagoon Point to the north (Gravel Beach:  last year, same afternoon).  Other than the stairs at the park and a few drain pipes coming down the high bluff south of the park boundary, it's a pretty wild beach.

There are a couple of waterfalls that plunge directly to the beach and both were running full, their streams cutting through the thin sand layer deposited by the previous high tide.  And there is a large glacial erratic.  My petrology is rusty, but I was told once that this was a block of dunite, most likely from Twin Sisters near Mount Baker (anyone want to confirm or refute?)

There are some spectacular landslides - historic ones and new ones - on the bluffs between here and Bush Point.  The sun was going down or I would have checked them out on this hike.  Maybe later this spring.

Side note:  This is my 60th post from Whidbey Island since this little adventure began back at the end of 2005.  'Whidbey' is the most common label on the blog after 'Washington' and 'Puget Sound.'

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