Changes on the Beach

Things continue to change on the beach here. They change every day of course and that’s part of the beauty of living by the sea. Winds, tides and the seasons change things day by day. No two days are ever the same, but there have been some longer-term changes happening lately that may not be for the best.

Coastal Erosion

Sea-level rise and climate change will obviously play their role here, but coastal erosion has increased at this end of the beach since the sea defences were installed in Borth. It was bound to happen, the sea defences are designed to trap sediment and build up the beach behind them. Whilst it’s accumulating there, the usual supply of sediment northwards toward Ynyslas due to longshore drift has been slowed. Sediment is still being removed from the beach at Ynyslas but the supply has dried up as it’s all trapped within the sea defences further south.

All of this has resulted in scouring of the beach at Ynyslas where huge expanses of the submerged forest have been revealed.

Submerged Forest
Submerged Forest

The dunes are being cut back with every storm event too.

I’ve also noticed that the sea wall between the final two (most northerly) groynes has gone completely and the pebble bank jas moved landward now that it has no wall to stabilise it. That end of the car park will soon be lost to the pebbles.

Submerged Forest

It’s quite nice to see various features of the submerged forest of course and where it is exposed seaweeds have started to colonise it.

Seaweeds colonising the submerged forest soil beds
Seaweeds colonising the submerged forest soil beds

Gone however are the huge expanses of hard packed, flat sands as they are now interrupted by large areas of slippery slimey muds that were once the soils of the submerged forest. These are soft and easily eroded into deep gulleys. In some ways they provide interesting features to the beach with deep pools between them and lots of preserved tree stumps. They are however nightmare when under knee deep water and you’re trying to walk over them with windsurfing kit!

Things may of course revert back to how they were, and this could just be part of the natural cycle of changes on the beach. Somehow though it feels a little more drastic than that. We’ll have to see what the summer brings as a period of calmer weather well may cover them back up with sand once more.

1 Response

  1. Avatar forComment Author Mum x says:

    Natural changes are one thing but if caused by the flood defences in Borth thats not so good

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Alan Cole

Alan is a Freelance Website Designer, Sports & Exercise Science Lab Technician and full time Dad & husband with far too many hobbies: Triathlete, Swimming, Cycling, Running, MTBing, Surfing, Windsurfing, SUPing, Gardening, Photography.... The list goes on.

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