Friday, August 11, 2017

First Beach

First Beach, which is also simply called English Bay Beach, is the largest of the sculpted beaches along Vancouver's English Bay. As with all these beaches, it faces directly into the largest waves, otherwise the beach would leak out at one end or the other.


Saturday afternoon is pretty much just a sunny day at the beach and the tide rising over the low tide terrace is warm enough to swim in - and many folks do. By late afternoon, the crowds thicken. I do my best to estimate where the water level will be when the fireworks start, so we can be in the right place at 10PM, and the other several hundred thousand people are behind us, not in front of us.

By early Sunday morning, the beach is clean, empty, and groomed (for more on grooming, see English Bay: August 2006).

False Creek

Just a few shots of the edge of False Creek - a wonderful shoreline, albeit not quite the marshy estuary it once was. There's really not enough wave action to create beaches in here, even if the configuration and the profiles were more amenable, so the result is an interesting assortment of engineering treatments.


Here are some links back to some earlier False Creek posts:
Creekside: October 2011
Yaletown: October 2011
False Creek: August 2010

English Bay

I've posted many times about many different beaches on English Bay - I suppose they are my favorite urban beaches, we visit them regularly, and I always take too many pictures. Here are a few, from the last weekend in July.

Most of the photos are of Sunset Beach, on the north side of the inner portion of the bay. Including the little beach that peters out up against the Burrard Street Bridge and the entrance to False Creek.

The last photo is Hadden Park's Dog Beach, just across the water in Kitsilano. It also appears in Kitsilano: April 2016.


Gravel Beach: Vancouver (lots of beaches, lots of posts)

I'll follow up (I think) with some photos of First Beach, also on English Bay, and several non-beaches on False Creek.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Double Bluff

I've been slipping. Maybe I was thinking I was going to write something longer, but just didn't seem to get to it. It's summer, after all. But I've had a bunch of pictures from Double Bluff in the queue for more than a month and if I don't do something with them, they'll sit for another month. So I'll post the photos with minimal commentary, hoping it will allow me to move on.

Double Bluff is the distinct light colored cliff you see when you look north up the Sound from the Edmonds ferry. It is a long, straight stretch of high bluffs, oriented perpendicular to the maximum fetch. One of several notable "swash-aligned" bluffs on the Sound.

It's a cross-section of older interglacial fluvial sediments (Whidbey formation) overlain by Vashon advance outwash and till (though that stuff is high above the beach). There's a lot of variability in the sediments - not a terribly simple layer cake. And there are some fascinating deformation features that always capture attention and cause arguments among geologists.


You often see big chunks of peat on the beach - coming out of the Whidbey, so they date back a glacial cycle or two. There's a big boulder at the east end. Chuckanut, apparently, with a big fossil palm frond on top (something like that, I'm no botanist). Started near the equator, traveled to Bellingham, then got delivered to south Whidbey 18,000 years ago. Give or take a few thousand years. It's not going anywhere right now.