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Friday, September 16, 2011

Eruption - Fine Art Weekly Photo

Shorebreaking waves are an amazing thing. Not the tiny little waves that lap onto shore. No, we're talking about large, heavy, dumping waves that crash directly on shore. The ones that fascinate people yet keep most of them out of the water. The ones that bodyboarders, bodysurfers, and skimboarders love. The ones that over the past few years standup surfers have been tackling as well.

There are many such waves around the world. One of the most famous is here in Orange County, CA. Yes, the Wedge in Newport Beach.

Heavy waves crash down their weight on land, not a reef or sandbar off shore. There's no fine, silky sand here. It's coarse. The ferocity of the waves have long since carried away any finer sands and deposited them just off shore on the sea bed. Here you'll typically find a steep sloping beach down to the water's edge. And sometimes here you'll find that steep sloping beach has been eroded by a series of massive waves into a vertical shelf of sand. But it wont stay that way.

As the tide rises, so will the waves. They'll no longer pound the shore below the wall of sand. The rising water level will bring the churning, bubbling, surging white water of these heavy shorebreaking waves up and over the precipice, erupting skywards as they do. Eventually all that will be left is the characteristically steep slope leading towards the ocean.

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