Friday, July 16, 2010

Tarballs on the beach

We took a trip to Waveland/Bay St. Louis today to see how the Mississippi coast was fairing.

Click on any picture for a larger version.

We spied a few victims of the oil spill:





We entered the beach area by the Silver Slipper Casino. As we walked the beach in Lakeshore/Waveland it was very clean.

Thinking we could venture behind the casino - to a place that sold bait - I drove to the back of the building but was stopped by a guy clad all in black who told me I couldn't go any further and to turn around. I complied.

As we were leaving the casino grounds, we spotted two "vessels of opportunity" leaving the command center to lay boom.





We walked out onto the beach outside the casino and it was clean and pristine. I felt great. So we decided to venture down the beach towards Bay St. Louis.


Beach Boulevard is being resurfaced and it was very slow going.(Waveland seems to be doing construction on 90% of their roads simultaneously).

We came upon a group people cleaning the beach - so that's why it appeared so clean!!



Apparently, they bus the beach cleaners to the spots to be cleaned every day. Each group is escorted by rent a cops. As we approached the group, I could see the Barney Fife guy coming towards my car. I ignored him and kept driving.

It's true what they say about these beach cleaners working 20 minutes and taking 20 minute breaks.







I drove about a mile past the beach cleaners and we got out and walked the beach. We were now on the Waveland/Bay St. Louis city limits.



Five years post Katrina, views like this represent the majority of the beach front homes.

Walking down to the shoreline, it was apparent that the beach cleaners hadn't been here since high tide.


The tarballs are the black "rocks" in this picture.


The lines made as the tide receded seem to contain minute pieces of oil by product.

The size and shape of the tar balls varied. I supposed this is due to "weathering".


This group of globs had the consistency of clay. Very ugly.


This was the largest tar ball we found.






A dead blue crab amidst petroleum. So sad.


Boom is useless on beaches due to the wind and tides.

After walking down the beach for some time we noticed storm clouds moving our way, so we headed back towards the car.



Along the sidewalk of the beach we spotted three straw booms that apparently had blown off the beach.



Walking back to the car, I snapped a few pictures that I'd like to use in my calendar next year.









We the residents of the Gulf Coast survived Katrina. We will survive this.

2 comments:

bayoucreole said...

I am speechless.

swampwoman said...

C and I were in Biloxi yesterday morning and saw the caravan of beach sweepers. It was hard to find tar balls, but there were tiny ones here and there. I didn't want to bring my camera this time, so thanks for the pictorial update.

I honestly thought it would be much more covered and that it would smell or petroleum and chemicals, but it didn't. I suspect where we were though that most of the oil and debris is washing up on the water side of Deer Island.

Mississippi seems to be less affected, but friends that went to Orange Beach and Perdido 2 weeks ago said it was horrible out there. I don't want to minimize the impact, cause I know that it will be a looooong time before this is over.

I dearly miss the oysters...