Mad ocean, foaming at the mouth

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The past few months have brought a never-ending supply of foam to the beaches at Point Reyes. Mostly polystyrene, though other flavors as well, all petroleum based.

This pile has been growing and shrinking for several months. I add to it that which I am unable to haul out at the time, then return later to pack out what I can.

I strive to get foam off the beach as soon as possible. Birds peck at it looking for food, harming themselves in the process, as well as breaking it up into smaller pieces for other unsuspecting animals to attempt to snack on.

This young elephant seal is still trying to figure out how to feed itself now that mom and her high-fat milk is gone. I hope it quickly learned that foam is NOT food.

The rough water of winter storms grinds it up and pushes it into the drainages that meet the beach.

Such a lovely sight in a national seashore!

This scene is reproduced all over the world each and every winter.

I spent nearly 2 hours picking up most everything not wood or sand in this image.

Foam does not weigh much, but it is big and bulky. Forty-five pounds or so on one’s back is like a spinnaker. Thankfully I had the wind at my back on the hike out and made great time.

The next stop for this load of man-made mess is the dumpster at Point Reyes headquarters.

I wonder where the contents of the dumpster will end up?

Remember, on this tiny planet, there is no away.

2 thoughts on “Mad ocean, foaming at the mouth

  1. Thank you for all that you do physically, and to raise awareness! It really saddens me how poorly so many people treat our beautiful planet. I live in the Sacramento area, but every time we visit any beach, I make a point to pick up one bag of trash. Last weekend at Stinson Beach, I watched a group of men walk away from 5 beer bottles and a forty ounce bottle and just leave it at the shoreline. It just makes me so sad.

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