Monday, October 02, 2017

Dionisio Point

Dionisio Provincial Park lies at the northern tip of Galiano Island, across Porlier Pass from Valdez Island to the north. Technically, it's marine access only, but with some sleuthing, there are ways to get there without a boat. But don't tell anyone I told you.

There's a beautiful little tombolo connecting the rocky island (which I think is Dionisio Point proper) to the rest of Galiano. Arguably, one might call it a small cuspate foreland that's trying to become a tombolo, since the tip probably goes underwater at many high tides. The southern side of the spit is somewhat sheltered within a rocky bay, so wave exposure may be greater from the north. The northern beach is more fully developed and there were overwash features consistent with north to south wave action. At the same time the bar at the tip also showed signs of current flow from south to north. This would be an interesting spot to watch at a very high tide.


Interestingly, the northern beach is also much sandier than the southern one, which consists of a fairly uniform gravel lag. I suspect it takes pretty unusual conditions to move material around very much on the south side, whereas the northern beach looked to be much more active.

The sandstones out at the point displayed the neat tafoni weathering that's so characteristic of these Nanamimo Group rocks.

Besides the tombolo, there was a nice little pocket beach around the corner to the northwest. And in between, what was once a substantial Salish village (Quelus', perhaps linked with nearby modern Penalakut Tribe). Here's a link to an NPR story from a few years back: KUOW, 2011.

As is often the case, there is more about some of these Galiano sites on my companion blog:
hshipman: Galiano 2017

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