Sunday, July 07, 2013
Magnolia Bluff is both some of Seattle's premier real estate and one of Puget Sound's best known deep-seated landslide complexes. The homes along Perkins Lane are held in place with expensive public drain systems (some dating to the WPA in the 1930s) and at least in some cases, expensively engineered foundations and retaining walls. Occasionally, these things aren't enough and the homes don't stay put.
The views are spectacular, but the beaches leave something to be desired. There is very little sand and gravel - most of it where seawalls are sufficiently far back to allow a remnant of the original upper beach or where sediment has been trapped on the updrift, southeast side of old groins. Most of the beach is coarse gravel and cobble, too stable to get rolled around under most wave conditions. It is unlikely that this beach was so starved of finer beach sediment 100 years ago, since the eroding bluffs should have provided plenty of it. But today, it's really hard to figure out where that sediment would come from.