The Dunes at Myrtle Beach (Part 2)


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October 2015. We were so blessed to have our oldest grandson here with us for 10 days. We can’t wait to bring him and his little brother back!

As mentioned in our last post, we will now look at the dunes as we walk north – which has been our walking beach route since we started staying here in 2013.

This most precious picture of our oldest grandson, then two years old, which shows the north view as we hit the beach. I’d love to recreate this picture with him, one day!

We’ve now been here for 10 days so we are seeing more clearly the damage from Hurricane Matthew. As soon as we arrived back here after our evacuation, we managed to get in four long walks, one going south and the rest back up north. Then we hit a bad spell….it seems that the sand surface has definitely changed and my knees will testify to it!  

This is a screen shot of our five mile walk, 2 1/2 out and back. It's not the best picture, but the best I could get. If you look closely, you will see two piers: Myrtle Beach State Park is first, then the Springmaid Pier is near the end of our walk.

This is a screen shot from my “Map My Walk” app, showing our five-mile walk, 2 1/2 out and back. It’s not the best picture, but the best I could download.

I think I have mentioned my knee troubles in the past.  It started with a torn meniscus which I had scoped in 1998. In or around 2008, I suffered another knee injury, but “just” a bone bruise. I should mention I used to be a long (slow) distance runner and even spent a few years participating in triathlons. Long story short, I discovered I could have a series of OrthoVisc shots twice a year (they tapered off and now it’s been over a year since my last series) to restore my activity level. Within a short time, I was able to walk a few miles and within a few years, discovered I could once again hike mountains! It was a process and the main thing I learned is that I’ll never run again and my knees prefer God’s creation over sidewalks. And a nice flat beach like Myrtle Beach is about the best.

We have really enjoyed our time here, but for me, it is mainly about the long walks where my knees thrive! My knee issues also keep me off of a bicycle. Swimming is very good, but I don’t like to swim where I can’t see what else is in the water with me! But I digress……

Low tide in October 2015, looking north as we start our walk

Low tide in October 2015, looking north as we start our walk. Nice hard and flat surface but yet gentle on the knees! Note the sand dunes, covered in sea oats and beach grass.

Same view nearly a year later, after Hurricane Matthew.

Same view nearly a year later, low tide, after Hurricane Matthew. Still looks wide and flat, but it is different now.

So I had to take a few days off as one of my knees swelled up after our first 5 days back here. So it was RICE for me, Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation.  Bill said he didn’t mind as his ankles were feeling it too. I was so sad as the Horses on Myrtle Beach were about to return and I knew they would keep us off the beach for four more days. One thing I now know, my knees need to walk at a minimum of several miles a week and they thrive when I walk the five miles here nearly daily!  So what has happened?

Row of houses just north of PirateLand

March 2016 – Row of houses just north of PirateLand. Note the sand dunes in front of the houses, covered with sea oats and beach grass. Low tide and extremely wide and flat beach.

Row of houses just north of PirateLand

Same day as above, March 2016. I was taking a photo of the cool birds (sea gulls?) but look at the shot of the dunes in front of the row of houses just north of PirateLand. Amazing I had this photo as you will now see what happened after the hurricane from current pictures.

It looks like to us there was a big scoop taken out of the shore line in front of Pirateland and the few beachfront houses just north of us. As the tide goes in and out, the sand is shifted tremendously. Then what is left is just more soft and mushy. It is not like that once we get to the Myrtle Beach State Park beach.  It wasn’t like that when we walked the mile or south of Pirateland’s beach.

After the hurricane.

November 9, 2016. After the hurricane. You may begin to notice what caught our eye, that their is a “scoop” taken out of the beach. Some of the residents have had some sand replenishment where the dunes were wiped out.

November 2016

November 8, 2016. Up close, looking at one of the beachfront houses. I never took a picture this close before since I wanted to respect the privacy of the homeowners. But the beach has now disappeared some and we can’t help but walk closer. No replenishment sand here. Can you see the concrete block where pilings were set? Uncovered and some were actually moved by the water.

We haven’t seen any bulldozing or efforts to reclaim the dunes from Pirateland up to Springmaid Beach. But a few of these private houses have had sand deposited where the dunes were swept away. The sand seems to be only different on this small portion of the beach, about a mile. We can’t say it’s that, it’s just something else that has caused it….as if the hurricane just took an extra bite out of the beachfront here.

We’ve heard that the coast of Florida, around Flagler Beach was really hit hard. Hopefully, when we return to Florida/Alabama for the winter, we will be able to check it out. Has anyone seen any other areas hit hard? We’d love to learn more.

To be continued….

He is the Maker of heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them– he remains faithful forever.” Psalm 146:6

 

8 thoughts on “The Dunes at Myrtle Beach (Part 2)

  1. Water can certainly cause damage. Always sad to see. Hope you’re able to continue your walks.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks Ingrid. The knees seem fine, thanks to RICE! It rained all day so I guess that should clean up the beach as the horses left today. Hopefully tomorrow we will get back out there!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow! What a difference a hurricane can make! Thanks for the before and after photos. I am sure the clean up and beach restoration will take time. Hope you knees are feeling better:)

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Debbie, I hope your knees are better and you can take your long walks on the beach again very soon. Savannah and Tybee Island had many, many huge oak and pine trees blown down. Many roofs are covered in blue tarps awaiting a new roof and some homes flooded. I haven’t yet walked on the beach to see what the dunes look like. We’re there a lot of downed trees in Myrtle Beach?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Oh those blue tarps-how many I’ve seen when we lived in Florida after those 4 hurricanes criss crossed the state in 2004. We did see trees down along I-95 on our drive from Virginia to Myrtle Beach. We stayed one night in Dillon. Quite a few down around the campground. Only one RV was smashed-thankfully no one was home! It’s hard to tell how many trees were down in Pirateland and at Myrtle Beach State Park because so many are still standing. It’s amazing! But we found where the remnants are piled up. We returned here a month later so they already did a lot of clean up. Only one park model was damaged-while so many are surrounded by trees. Hopefully I’ll include some of this in a future post. I have pictures, but not of the smashed RV as they removed it pretty fast!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Amazing photos Debbie, thanks for sharing them and explaining how they relate, I hope your knees are better.

    Christian Love Always – Anne.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you my sweet Anne! I just use an iPhone, so capture what I am seeing…but it’s so much better in person!
      I could use some prayers about my knees. They love to walk and we were rained in yesterday and today they are begging me to go walk….but first more RICE. ;-{

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