Thursday, September 24, 2009

Barrier Beaches and Oceanscapes

Summer and beaches. Vacation time, relaxing in the warmth of the sun. With the very short summer we had here in the Boston (Massachusetts, USA) area, I only had a couple of visits to the beach.

Still, beaches are beautiful in any season or time of day. Being fair-skinned, I tend to visit the beach in the late afternoon or early evening when the sun’s burning rays are much less intense.
Many of the beaches along the east coast of the US are classified as barrier beaches. The largest and most famous of these is Cape Cod, a long peninsula extending line a bent arm off the coast of Massachusetts.
A barrier beach is are typically a narrow strip of sand between the ocean and a tidal lagoon or marsh behind it. It is formed by wave action. The waves roll up the shoreline and desposit sand. Eventually it builds up to form a dune.

The two beaches I visited this year are both barrier beaches. Revere Beach is the gem of its namesake city and the oldest public beach in the US. Good Harbor Beach is a small, community beach in Gloucester, a city known for its fishing industry.

Even with much development around each beach, the aerial photos reveal the classic barrier beach configuration of a narrow sand bar.

Here are a few pictures from my trips to the beach.

Above: Revere Beach

Below: Good Harbor Beach

Above: View of the town of Nahant on a peninsula off the coast of Revere Beach

Below: A house, typical of fishing communities (complete with widdow's watch) built on a rock cliff overlooking Good Harbor Beach

Below: a small island offshore from Good Harbor Beach.

Below: Views of the dunes at Revere Beach (left) and Good Harbor Beach (right)

Below: Sunset at Good Harbor Beach (here I am, standing in shallow water, risking a water-soaked cell phone if a big wave breaks on me!)

Above and below: Sunset at Revere Beach. Time to go home.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Sunset Along the Charles River

The fading days of summer mean the sun sets earlier. While I'm sad that what little of a summer we had around Boston is coming to an end, the early sunsets mean some great photo opportunities on my bike ride home from work.

The best part of the trip is riding west (into the sunset) along the Esplande, the park made famous for Boston's 4th of July celebration at the Hatch Shell. Here's a few shots from last Wednesday's ride.

Below: Evening light peaks under a footbridge

Below: The pinkish light of sunet reflecting in the pool.

Below: Two views approaching the Harvard Bridge at Massachusetts Avenue.

Below: A full moon among the skyscrapers of the Back Bay skyline.