An Inlet is a Beach : Winter Harbor 2022

Gear and groceries stowed, we headed south to see what weather hath wrought in our absence. It’s a short paddle to follow the old channel around to the inlet, or at least what used to be the inlet.

Amazing to think that within my lifetime, steamers could enter through this inlet and anchor in a protected deepwater harbor. Now a broad beach runs from what last year was the southern tip of the island to the mainland, with a dry sandbar three feet high. I knew this was the way it would end up eventually. It’s a process ongoing since the north inlet was formed, cutting the long spit off from the shore and forming the island a century ago. But I did not think it would happen so soon, let alone a single year.

The skin-on-frame kayaks will float in just two inches of water, which came in handy. At low tide, that’s all the water in some places inside the bar and the inlet.

Later, we walked down the beach, and across the bar over what last year had been crashing waves, to the marsh on the mainland at the far end.


Nothing is amiss, all looks as it should.

And yet not at all like it was.

All this sand was water and waves a year ago. On the right is all that remains of the inlet.

The wind died down with the sunset, replaced by calm, a gibbous moon and sky full of stars.

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