East Beach ~ Barrier Beach

Virtual Field Trip
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Today is the day we've been waiting for. We are going to the beach! Finally, we'll get to see this barrier beach, East Beach, in Charlestown, Rhode Island that we have heard so much about. As we pack and get ready to go, let's make sure we check our equipment to make sure we don't forget anything. Did we bring all of the equipment including the first aid kit, sunscreen, and sunglasses? Ready, let's go!

It sure is a bright, sunnyday. It might be hard to keep our attention on our work. Why are we here? That is right, we're here to do a field study of the beach and the dunes. Boy, the sand sure is white. It must be because of all that quartz.

First, we'll head to the shoreline and see whatís happening there. The air feels cooler down here and so refreshing. The water is even more refreshing. No wonder, the temperature is a cool 70 degrees F. But we can't linger too long. Let's get on to our study of the beach zones.

From the shoreline we can see the wrack line or strand line. As we walk up closer we see three distinct lines formed by previous high tides. The highest strand line away from the beach was formed one week ago , on July 7th, during the full moon. The lowest strand line was formed by the last high tide. Whatís in the wrack line? There is quite a bit of eelgrass and some spongy, velvet-like algae commonly referred to as dead manís fingers. It is called that because of its resemblance to fingers while it is floating in the sea.

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