Thursday, September 12, 2013

I Want My Toes In The Sand - Colored Sand

Do you take it for granted?  That there will always be sand for you when you go to the beach?  Of course you do, and so do I.  As long as there are tides, there will be sand.  Right?  I hope so.  So - if you haven't traveled the World or visited a ton of beaches, you probably think of sand as that fine, little, tan-ish stuff that gets into EVERYTHING !  In your food, your eyes when a kid runs by, in the lining of your swimsuit (and that really sucks) and under your nails.  You find sand in your clothes and in your car for months after leaving a beach.  Am I right?  I kinda like finding the annoying grit after I have returned home.  Brings back great memories of toes in the water and ass in the sand; thanks to Zac Brown Band

What about that color of sand.  When I called it 'tan-ish', I was way off.  There are so many different colors of sand and I want to see them all.  Just what I need is another Bucket List, but here it is.  A Bucket List of beaches that I want to visit, just to see, and maybe gather, different colored sand.  One of my many mottoes of life is, "The Woman Who Dies With The Most Sand, Wins".  I'm gonna win.
Besides myself, my kids, grand kids, niece and friends have brought me back bottles, baggies and other assorted containers, filled with sand, shells and drift wood from many beaches from many places.  I will win.

Back to the colored sand.  I have yet to collect the extreme colors of sand.  But I want to share some of the info that I have found to this point.  Check it out -

First, since it doesn't really seem like sand, I want to show you Glass Beach.  It is located at Fort Bragg, California, just a bit North of San Francisco.  It amazes me even more than the colored sand beaches.  How do you get 'glass sand'?  Well - in the early 20th Century, the residents of Fort Bragg threw they trash over the cliffs.  All kinds of trash, from food to bottles to appliances and vehicles.  This practice was eventually stopped and the ocean tides eventually washed most away with the exception of the glass and some of the pottery.  The pounding waves smoothed the remains and formed them into small, smooth pieces.  In 1967 the beach began to get a good clean up and in 1998 the beach became a public beach.  No gathering is allowed but we all know that one good pic is worth a ton of precious sand from a beach like this.

Pfeiffer Beach is located South of San Francisco and host a beautiful purple sand.  Again we have to wonder what would bring this purple to the beach.  Here's how - sand gets it's color from minerals in the area, thus the variance from one area to the next.  On Pfeiffer Beach it is the manganese garnet deposits found in the surrounding rocks. 

The red beach of Santorini, Greece sits at the base of giant red cliffs.  Kokkini Beach is colored by iron-rich black and red lava rocks left over  from ancient volcanic activity of Thira.  As pretty as it may be it is not the friendliest of beaches.  Visitors bring chairs to avoid the rough texture and by midday, the sand can become extremely hot.  So hit this location early in the day.  

Another red sand beach is located on the eastern coast of the island of Maui. Kaihalulu Beach is at the base of Ka'uiki Head which is a cinder  cone, and the source of the red sand.  This beach is secluded and not the easiest beach to reach and is sometimes considered a 'clothing optional' beach.  This red sand is much smoother than that of Santorini.

At a risk of following a holiday theme, I am showing you a green beach, again in Hawaii. Check out
Papakolea Beach which is located on the big island of Hawaii.  Olivine crystals, which the locals call Hawaiian diamonds, is the influence of the green color.  Papakolea is one of two green beaches in the U.S. and four in the world. be a green sand beach. next.  Check out

Could we call this the Sorority Girl beach?  Harbour Island is located in the district of Bahamas and is popular for it's beautiful pink beaches.  The pink comes from the high concentration of coral in the waters along the eastern coast.  Know to the locals as Briland, this island is a popular destination of U.S. tourist.

Punalu'u Beach is located in Hawaii and is also known as the Black Sand Beach.  The unusual black sand was created by lava flowing into the ocean.  The basalt reaches the surface and forms the beautiful black sand.  Who would think that the lava could be worn down to such a pretty finish?  

Please don't confuse this beach of black sand with Black's Beach in southern Cali ! 


From Black to White seems appropriate.   Hyams Beach is a seaside village with a population of less than 300 and is located in New South Wales, Australia, on the shores of Jervis Bay.  Guinness Book of Records has this beach as being the whitest beach in the world. 

Another white sandy beach is Crescent Beach, Siesta Key, Florida.  This beach is located on Siesta Key, a barrier island just off the coast of Sarasota, Florida.  The said is 99% pure quartz, which has washed down Florida's rivers from the Appalachian Mountains.  The sand has a feel and texture of powdered sugar and because it is quartz, it never heats up with the hot Florida sun.
Erosion of gray-shale cliffs along the shore in Humboldt County, California gives Shelter Cove it's gray colored sand.  Tho the sand may not seem to be as impressive as some of the other colors, it sounds like an amazing area for the wild life and the hiking.  And honestly, I think the sand looks pretty awesome too. 

Orange is the color of choice for the beach on Ramla Bay, located on the northern side of the island Gozo; one of the Maltese islands.  This beach may be free of resorts and businesses but it has what any tourist needs -  a couple of bars and a few ice cream huts. It's about a 45 minute hike to get to Ramla Bay from the nearest community but there are regular running buses for tourist and locals. 

Porto Ferro is a 1 1/4  mile stretch of another orange beach, located on the northern corner of Italy's Sardinia and is composed of a mixture of the area's native orange limestone, crushed shell and other volcanic deposits.  When looking up info on this beach, there seemed to be a lot of boasting about the great surfing opportunities.  
island of
Check this out -

I am thinking that San Francisco is going to be my Colored Sand Bucket List first stop.  They seem to have much to offer in that area of California. One more that I found for the Pacific coast and located just about  7 miles south of the city.  It is a brown sand beach named Rockaway Beach and from a distance looks like chocolate.  It truly is brown.  The combination of grey limestone and volcanic greenstone produces this vivid brown color.  There's easy access and is surrounded by shops and restaurants.

Seems only appropriet that this is the last beach that I will mention in this post.  Sort of like a combination of all the colors.

Rainbow Beach i a bitty little beach, just over a half mile long, in Australia.  There are 74 different hues, a combination of erosion and iron oxide buildup that has been occurring since the last ice age.
There's a tragically sad story behind the colors of this beach.  According to an ancient Aboriginal legend, the sands became colorful as a result of the rainbow spirit falling into the tall (over 650 feet) beach side cliffs after losing battle over a beautiful woman, thus leaving his beautiful colors to rest on the beach for eternity.   I do believe I prefer the erosion theory. 

 I leave you only with one thought.  Or maybe two.

1.  Make a plan to visit your favorite beach, no matter what color the sand may be.
2.  Until you can make it to your destination, put on a bit of beach music and dance your day away.

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