Turtle Nest, Treasure Island, Florida June 2020
I took advantage of a break in the storm late yesterday morning to walk the beach. Though it was windy and the surf was up, I was happy to have the sand between my toes. I was surprised by the changes on my beach.
Typically, there’s about a football field of sand to cross before reaching the water. But that wasn’t the case, in most places there wasn’t any dry sand as the waves were touching the dunes.
Sadly, most of the sea turtle nests that were recorded here along the Florida Gulf Coast last month are washing away. Including the one here on my stretch of beach. I snapped this shot about an hour before high tide yesterday afternoon, so I fully expect it to be completely destroyed by now.
Though tropical storm Cristobal is making landfall over in Louisiana, the storm surge combined with the full moon exacerbated the coastal impact. In fact, I just learned there’s term for it; storm tide.
For your edification: A storm surge is an increase in water pushed onshore by the rotating winds associated with hurricanes and lesser systems. While a storm tide is the combination of a storm surge with an astronomical tide. These are the ones that can cause the most flood-related issues.
I admit, I am trepidatious about this hurricane season. Especially since NOAA is predicting an above normal one with an estimated 13-19 named storms. I take some comfort in knowing that the last major hurricane hit Tampa in 1920. Though there’s another way of looking at that, the area may be long overdue…
Tropical Storm and Hurricane Trajectories Since Recordkeeping Began in 1842, Courtesy of NOAA