Thursday, March 28, 2013

3/28/13 Report - North Winds Continue & Dutch Shipwreck

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

One Typical Treasure Coast Treasure Beach Yesterday

There are actually some small cuts on a few beaches right now.  There aren't many and they aren't big (one foot and less), but there are a few out there.

The surf has been running only around 2 feet, so why are there any cuts at all?   That is a good question, but there is a good answer.

Have you noticed the wind lately.  It has been from the north/northwest for a few days pretty continuously.  Normally with little surf you wouldn't expect any cuts, but north winds are important.

You probably remember many times when the surf is up around 8 or more feet and there were no cuts.  Remember the big waves we had with Sandy, but a lot of the beaches didn't even cut then.  So what is the difference?

The north winds often give an angle to the waves as they hit the beach.  That slices away at the sand and creates cuts, unlike water that hits directly at a ninety degree angle and washes straight up the face of the beach and then back down again.

Even though most people look for big waves, the wind and wave direction is every bit as important.  Like I said, big waves don't necessarily create erosion.  The best chance for cuts occurs when the wind is from the north, even though waves hitting from the south can create erosion too. 

You hear about Nor'easters, and they do tend to create the most productive cuts and conditions for finding old shipwreck items.  The only thing that comes close is when the water hits and washes stuff out of the dunes, which doesn't happen real often.

So my main point today is to not underestimate the importance of wind and wave direction. 
The cuts that I saw yesterday were small and were only seen at a few spots.  Those cuts were near the high tide line but not very high on the beach, and even though the tides have been bigger lately, they weren't that big, especially considering the small surf.

Most of the beaches are like the one shown in the photo above - no cuts, but maybe a little sand loss in the past day or two.  Some are still building.

The beaches that I looked at were fairly packed.  Not mushy like you might expect.  

There is a lot of old piled up sand still out there, both on the beach and in front of the beaches.  That protects the beach and things buried under all that sand.

Unfortunately when I was at the beach with cuts, I didn't have my camera card in and didn't get a photo of the cuts.

Another Beach Yesterday Near Low Tide.
The tide was down a little more than has usually been the case lately at low tide, but the beach fronts weren't very productive.  Very few targets there.

The beach shown to the right is pretty much like the one shown above - no cuts.

We are near the full moon and Spring equinox.

If you didn't know, Easter falls on the first Sunday after the first full moon after the Spring equinox.  That also explains some of the tidal variation.

There is now a new buoy out in front of the Ocean Grill in Vero.  Does anyone know what is going on with that?

Hope you enjoyed the article on the Bethel Creek House of Refuge.   And the locations of all the old houses of refuge posted yesterday.

Here is a BBC story on what appears to be a Dutch shipwreck from around 1700.

And here are more pictures from that wreck including a dead-eye rigging block, cannons, cannon ball, brick, tile, etc.

The surf today on the Treasure Coast is around 2 - 3 feet, increasing tomorrow up to about 4 feet.  And the tidal variation will be just a little more than today.

That won't be enough to significantly improved beach detecting conditions.

Low tide this afternoon is around 3:30 PM.

There are still a lot of snow birds detecting on the Treasure Coast.

Happy hunting,