Cape Cod Road Trip

31404109_10156225277767510_2286550140674113536_oSome days you have ideas for a story, some days you just ride around and see what comes up.

31403908_10156225240837510_616833036863930368_n

Bass River Bridge, above and below…

31408102_10156225240882510_8444934589121560576_o

31416727_10156225316447510_2931035182012039168_oWe also got our bad selves out to Smuggler’s Beach…in Yarmouth, home of Mattacheese.

31417140_10156225240907510_3788306475290460160_o

31421535_10156225240872510_5629537252615913472_o

Docks, both great and small…

31421545_10156225277732510_547773295638872064_o

31433659_10156225240862510_1228575064308318208_oAbove, a personal-use lighthouse at the Bass River Bridge.

31437512_10156225277717510_5390269563768143872_oLifeguard stands always look cool in the offseason.

We got in some Parker River Beach,  below…

31444660_10156225333772510_9040889991823097856_o31444967_10156225334312510_3701927158185197568_o31454075_10156225334482510_7379616600443322368_o

‘merica!31472640_10156225266957510_2169058660297211904_o31486871_10156225266942510_3882592526539948032_oStash these for Memorial Day…

31495284_10156225315362510_6640780353202028544_oI do a lot of shore photography and I have always had a weakness for curved jetties. Plymouth has a nice one, but this is Yarmouth.

31503415_10156225240902510_8518996579972022272_oBass River dock…

31505960_10156225334657510_7287034401374863360_oCottages in Yahhhmuth.

 

31518964_10156225240842510_4944410365980049408_oGood spot for the Dab Pen!

 

31398321_10156225312192510_5262918633775955968_oI am nothing if not a romantic, and will risk the creepy shot of people who don’t know I am shooting at them to bring you, the reader, a cute picture.

31400976_10156225312922510_746019000223268864_o

Indoor pool, at the beach. There’s an indoor sand box on the hotel’s backside.

31403072_10156225240857510_2971385540764499968_o

I never tire of lighthouses, a good trait in a Cape Cod photographer.

31403468_10156225266937510_9094179454950834176_o

It is my intention to go through all of my photographs and compile enough for a book on Cape Cod wind vanes.

31403472_10156225352282510_6933487408126099456_oHad to stop at the Beach House.

31403779_10156225333512510_4135603101417603072_oSmall seawall here, strange, I need to chat up a local…

31403921_10156225334472510_8581313841017651200_oThe good part about the offseason Cape is that you can get some pretty nice beaches to yourself.

 

20180503_180012

Hey, that duck is from a Rehoboth article, what’s he doing here?

20180501_094151

Above and below, Plymouth… because we just emptying the photo gallery on the camera at this point.

20180430_092246

Let’s get back to the Cape…

20180429_115254“C-o-m-p-t-o-n and the city they call Long Beach…”

 

20180429_111932

A couple of beached boats…

20180429_112719

 

20180429_111457This looks like Captain Bob got married, had a bunch of kids and had to vastly upgrade the sea shanty.

20180429_104827How you ‘dune?

20180428_155311S’up?

20180429_100344

You know you hate yourself when you take behind-the-wheel pictures on suicide alley. “Suicide Allie” or some similar spelling thereof would be a great stripper name at a dive bar.

20180428_171229Rip Skull!

20180429_104546Thanks for checking us out!

Defending Donald

20180511_110649

Hurry down to Cumbys on Main Street in Buzzards Bay today before the deep state stormtroopers move along the LaRouche people.

20180511_110639

You may remember them from a few years ago in the same spot, where they had a Barack Obama with a Hitler mustache poster.

20180511_110621

The guy seemed nice enough, although he got told to f*ck off by a few passing cars. I don’t think anyone beat him up last time, so things should be A-OK down in Bee Bay.

20180511_110322

Donald can’t do it alone, which is why God made Russia. It may have been the third Fatima Secret. Stacey is our only hardcore Catholic on the staff, so I took the liberty of leaving her contact information instead of mine. “I know a guy named Courtney,” said one of the guys sympathetically, as he checked my info and deduced that he was looking at a 6’5″ Stacey.

20180511_110612

I don’t know what eastern Australia did to run afoul of the Larouche paradigm, but it must suck when Yemen gets invited to a party and you don’t.

My man breaks it down for you, below…

 

 

Rehoboth Beast Hunting

20180506_092328

We heard reports of a bear in the Ash Street area of Rehoboth, so we scrambled the crew and headed out to see what was what. The first thing we found was a man’s man barbecue.

20180502_153542

We didn’t catch the bear (we were only going to shoot him with the camera), which was probably a good thing for all parties. We did catch a duck posse.

20180503_180018

Rehoboth, which is the Hebrew word meaning “broad places,” was founded in 1643. It originally stretched to Providence. The Native Americans took a few cracks at Rehoboth during King Philip’s War, burning houses and saw mills and generally scaring the bejesus out of the colonists. The white boys paid them back by killing Anawan (a Wampanoag sachem who took over after King Phillip perished) there, ending King Philip’s War in this part of the state. Duxbury”s Benjamin Church, America’s first ranger, led that mission.

20180503_180012.jpg

All of this matters very little to the ducks, who just want to be left alone to hang around on Ash Road. I found out later that they are free range Muscovy ducks, and sort of serve as the neighborhood’s conscience regarding speeding down that road

20180503_175947

I had to shoo them along, as cars were coming. I didn’t want them to get run over, because they were there both days that I searched Rehoboth and I had grown attached to them.

20180503_175951.jpg

One of them even sat down in the road like she thought she was an Occupy Rehoboth protestor.

 

 

Provincetown Shipwreck

WRECK OF THE ARTEMIS

20180429_112814.jpg
If you know a guy who misplaced his F/V Artemis, they may have it out in P-Town.

 

20180429_111844

The Artemis broke free from her mooring last month, washed across the harbor and came to rest on this breakwater.

 

20180429_112719

The town contacted the owner, who has yet to comply with their demands that he remove the vessel from the the breakwater.

 

20180429_112755.jpg

She’s a bit of a fixer upper, as they say down in the scrap yard. She is no pollution threat, and has been stripped of everything except her engine and her winch.

20180429_113133.jpg

My people told me that he was planning on fixing it up, but hadn’t gotten around to it yet.  It may also be safe to assume that he hadn’t gotten around to securing the mooring.

20180429_112833.jpg

Race Point Light couldn’t do anything for the Artemis before she crashed, and right now isn’t looking too good, either.

 

20180429_113247.jpg

Few articles are lessened by the sudden, needless introduction of a purple/pink boulder.

 

20180429_111938.jpg

There’s another ship up on a different jetty somewhere else in town, but checking out two shipwrecks on one road trip is sort of like what World War One guys felt regarding lighting three cigarettes off of one match… a sensible man just doesn’t do it.

NMLC Benefit

NMLC Benefit In Bourne Thursday…

Cranberry County Magazine

The Trowbridge Tavern is hosting celebrity bartender night on Thursday to benefit the National Marine Life Center.

All tips from the event will benefit the center.

The NMLC is a Buzzards Bay entity best known for rehabbing and releasing injured seals back into the ocean. They also help turtles, whales… even repotters, in some cases.

I think that almost every human being desires to help animals who are in trouble. There are few more viable callings.

It can be tough to do, because not everyone is a veterinarian or Steve Irwin type who can jump into a situation and have a positive effect

But you can do your part tonight just by having a little bit of the liquid courage and leave it a nice tip for your bartender… who do to the very nature of the celebrity Bartender game will be very much informed about seals.

I don’t drink…

View original post 126 more words

NMLC Benefit

The Trowbridge Tavern is hosting celebrity bartender night on Thursday to benefit the National Marine Life Center.

All tips from the event will benefit the center.

The NMLC is a Buzzards Bay entity best known for rehabbing and releasing injured seals back into the ocean. They also help turtles, whales… even reporters, in some cases.

I think that almost every human being desires to help animals who are in trouble. There are few more viable callings.

It can be tough to do, because not everyone is a veterinarian or Steve Irwin type who can jump into a situation and have a positive effect

But you can do your part tonight just by having a little bit of the liquid courage and leave it a nice tip for your bartender… who do to the very nature of the celebrity Bartender game will be very much informed about seals.

I don’t drink much… but when I do there is usually some nefarious underlying purpose. ” I’m going to drink this beer and then I’m going to smash it off that guy’s head” or ” she’s about 3 vodka drinks away from finding me attractive.” You know, tonsil polish blues, firewater funk.

Not tonight, however… no, tonight, I will lift the mug help some animals who otherwise might not get help.

The Trowbridge Tavern does Celebrity bartender night every Thursday and they’ve raised over $40,000 for local charities since January. The Trow doesn’t set the bar, they are the bar.

No, like literally…

The event starts at 6:30, at 100 Trowbridge Road, Bourne. It’s that TAVERN sign that you see when you cross the bridge… Cape Cod”s CITGO sign.

Are Duxbury Seawall Repairs Worth It?

Seawall repairs after a nor’easter…

Cranberry County Magazine

Duxbury Beach suffered through a series of gales last March, and the strain was too much for her protective seawall. Sections of it collapsed, and emergency repairs had to be made in advance of a follow-up storm.

These repairs are of the temporary sort, and the seawall as it stands now won’t stand long. A new wall will eventually have to be put in.

The repairs will be expensive, and the replacement will be more expensive. If they don’t occur, houses will fall into the sea and the coastline will erode away to a memory.

Who pays for the wall, how much they pay and who is responsible for repairs… that remains to be seen. It will most likely involve some court-type activity.

Hanging over the whole issue are the questions of whether people should live so close to the sea, whether 15,000 people should have to build a wall…

View original post 1,796 more words

Are Duxbury Seawall Repairs Worth It?

Duxbury Beach suffered through a series of gales last March, and the strain was too much for her protective seawall. Sections of it collapsed, and emergency repairs had to be made in advance of a follow-up storm.

These repairs are of the temporary sort, and the seawall as it stands now won’t stand long. A new wall will eventually have to be put in.

The repairs will be expensive, and the replacement will be more expensive. If they don’t occur, houses will fall into the sea and the coastline will erode away to a memory.

Who pays for the wall, how much they pay and who is responsible for repairs… that remains to be seen. It will most likely involve some court-type activity.

Hanging over the whole issue are the questions of whether people should live so close to the sea, whether 15,000 people should have to build a wall to protect 190 houses, whether rising sea levels make a wall useless and whether delaying seawall repairs until the wall collapses frees the town from their mandated repair work.

dbc2

Duxbury Beach, partially pictured above, is a residential area of 191 houses. I grew up there, still have family there, just so you know.

Many people from Duxbury Proper mistakenly think it is a part of Marshfield. Nope. From where the seawall in question begins, Duxbury runs about a half-mile to the Marshfield line.

It is lagely populated by seasonal folk, although many of the former cottages are gentrifying away from their Irish Riviera roots. It is by far Duxbury’s emptiest neighborhood from Labor Day until July (and most likely all year), and to my knowledge is Duxbury’s only seasonal neighborhood.

While the houses are not King Caesar-style mansions, the Atlantic frontage drives up the property values. The neighborhood kicks almost 2 million smackers back to Duxbury in property taxes.

Residents consume town services mostly for 2 months a year, and there is barely a need to send a school bus there. For the most part, they are invisible cash cows… but when they get attention, it tends to be Destruction Porn coverage from the local news of a bad nor’easter.

Habitation there would not be possible without the seawall. Memories of people and property being swept into the sea by the 1938 Great New England Hurricane were fresh on the mind as the sea walls of Massachusetts were being built in the 1940s and 1950s.

Duxbury finished their wall in 1954, and it runs from the south end of Ocean Road South to a small gap (the gap is from people who declined the $500 buy-in back in 1954) before the sea wall in Green Harbor. Before the US Army Corps of Engineers concrete seawall went in (busy work for WWII vets, an old schooler tells me), there was a wooden seawall made of telephone poles. Aside from that, Duxbury Beach relies on dunes.

The seawall held up well enough for 64 years, doing her repel-the-waves/stop-the-erosion thing… but the same thing that took down the walls of Constantinople took down the wall at Duxbury.

Attrition.

20180303_115742

The Turks didn’t use one big shot from a cannon to take down the walls of Constantinople, they instead used repeated, focused shots.

Likewise, the walls in Duxbury didn’t collapse under the pressure of a single Hawaii Five-O type wave, they were knocked down over 64 years of inexorable 3 to 8 foot surf.

Much like when you pile straw upon a camel or when you nag at a soon-to-be ex-spouse long enough, the end usually comes via what would otherwise seem to be an innocuous incident.

That piece of straw shouldn’t have broken the camel’s back, but it did. Similarly, the seawall in Duxbury has stood up to far worse surf than it saw in the storms of 2018, but when last March turned stormy… sha-doobie, Shattered.

Neither the Turks nor Duxbury thought to put rebar in their walls, but that’s something we can circle back to in a little while.

Rebar was first used in the 1500s, so the Byzantines have an excuse for the walls of Constantinople (which was Turkish by 1453). Duxbury, almost exactly 500 years later, just threw up a shoddy wall.

20180306_084442

Duxbury will pay 5 million and change to repair 750 feet of damaged seawall, and eventually around $6000 a foot for about a half mile of replacement seawall.

It should be high-end stuff. If a crumbly seawall lasts 64 years, a good one-even with rising sea levels and more frequent storms figured in- should last longer.

While it is never fun to ante up for a costly piece of infrastructure, the wall they put in next should still be standing when Ivanka Trump’s great-great-grandchildren are thinking about entering politics, if it is built properly.

That the town may still be paying off the wall while these future Trumps are running around is the basis of the anti-wall arguments. If that argument is accepted, the question becomes “Are those payments going to be worth it?”

“Worth it” is a broad area that ranges from “Will the wall hold up?” to “How will the wall benefit the town?” to ” No one should be living there anyway?” to “Neighbors should help neighbors” to whether Duxbury could or should disincorporate the troublesome beach neighborhood.

28616380_10156078342862510_1513589056784198229_o

I will leave questions of the wall’s durability to people more skilled in engineering than myself. I spent most of my high school physics class looking at legs, and it was all downhill after that.

“No one should be living there” is cancelled out by “Too late. Someone is living there,” while the helpful neighbor idea can easily be viewed as “Here’s some help, neighbor… Move somewhere else.”

Disincorporation is the concept of Duxbury washing their hands of the beach neighborhood. They no longer accept taxes and no longer offer town services. It would be similar to what the Chinese did with the Walled City of Kowloon.

It would be a complicated legal matter, as not one inch of Massachusetts territory is unincorporated. Everything here is bound to some sort of Municipal Corporation.

One of my people tells me that a town or even a village could be disincorporated only in Vermont, but it would have to involve either:

A) some sort of Roanoke/Salem’s Lot-style disaster that suddenly depopulates the area, or

B) a Centralia/Silent Hill town-toxifying chemical situation, or

C) a Quabbin Reservoir situation where people will die of thirst if the towns are not taken by the state and flooded.

I should add that the man who told me this is in prison, but his logic is sound.

27332701_10156001924647510_6806103068323564014_n

Washing their hands of a soggy beach neighborhood would establish Duxbury’s northern beach border at the gates of Duxbury Beach Park. Everything between that and Marshfield would be no man’s land… unless Duxbury Beach could go free agent and perhaps sign with Marshfield.

Otherwise, Duxbury Beach would quickly devolve into a Road Warrior sort of lawless chaos until the houses fell into the sea.

“Houses falling into the sea” is why Duxbury can’t disincorporate. Imagine, as the barrier beach decays, telling millionaires on Powder Point and Washington Street that construction debris will be washing into their yards for the next 700 years… should go well, yeah.

Avoiding that means disincorporating the people instead of the land. That means buying out 191 prime oceanfront properties.

This isn’t 1950, when you could buy 50 of the shanties for $25,000. Those visions of a Summer of ’42 cottage neighborhood are no longer valid. It’s why the ability of a single entity to buy and sell entire towns is limited to the bank in Monopoly.

Buying out the residents would cripple the town for a generation, and that would only be after 191 costly legal battles and before 191 costly demolitions.

You’d also be saying au revoir to two million a year in taxes, but it gets worse.

20180329_101134

Duxbury Beach is a barrier beach. Her job is not just to support the houses of her residents, but to protect the houses of the residents of Duxbury Proper.

If the residents are forced out and their homes are demolished due to a desire to avoid building a seawall, you now have a flat beach- below sea level in some places- with 100 yards of eroding hill and no dunes.

Dunes are fine protection from storm waves, to a point. They work, with ever-ongoing maintenance and restoration, at the central and southern parts of Duxbury Beach. Even then, they get washed over and the beach is breached during bad enough storms.

Keep in mind, Duxbury Beach is divided by a line that only true storm geeks recognize. If you look across Cape Cod Bay from Duxbury on a clear day, you can see the tip of Provincetown. It almost looks like a mirage, but it’s real enough.

From the Duxbury vantage point, storm waves coming in from the Atlantic either come from the right or the left of Provincetown. From the right, any wave began after Cape Cod, which is Duxbury Beach’s barrier beach. From the left, they are coming in from the open ocean, unobstructed, and they hit the beach with the force, like Obi. We’re talking monster truck force, perhaps double what is hitting at the other end of the beach.

Guess where the cutoff point is? Right around where the seawall starts on Duxbury Beach. Northern Duxbury Beach gets far worse surf than southern Duxbury Beach, which is odd because they are the same beach. A good nor’easter would make quick work of any dune laid down on the northern end of Duxbury Beach.

The part of Duxbury Beach that has an armored seawall is the part of Duxbury Beach that needs an armored seawall.

20180303_120958

The anti-wall people quickly find themselves in a Catch 22 situation.

They seek to avoid paying for a wall, so they bankrupt the town to buy out and demolish the houses on the beach.

Dunes don’t protect the town well enough. Dune depletion kicks in, as sand that would normally be washed down southward into the dunes after hitting the seawall is instead pushed ashore onto Ocean Road North, Ocean Road South and Gurnet Road.

The annual dune reparations would have to be preceded by annual repairs on the road leading out to the dune. Meanwhile, the barrier beach erodes.

Houses of more influential town residents in Duxbury Proper begin to get direct ocean effects as the barrier beach erodes away. The multi-million dollar high school complex is imperiled.

Duxbury is then left with one choice, the one they passed on before they got into this mess… build a wall. Only this time, they are doing it without $2 million a year in tax money.

If the disincorporation people are listened to and the town Pontius Pilates their hands of the beach village, they may not even have a viable beach to build the wall on once the disincorporated beach starts eroding… meaning that they spend a decade securing easements and operating heavy equipment in the wealthy people’s yards on Powder Point Road/King Casear Road and off Washington Street.

I don’t see that going well.

 

 

Simply put, Duxbury needs to build this wall. It sucks, but every other option they have sucks harder.

Disincorporating the beach neighborhood would be a penny-wise, pound-foolish act of financial masochism. It would be the equivalent of punching the gift horse in the mouth.

There is no way that Duxbury avoids building a new seawall. The only other options leave them bankrupt… or bailing out Washington Street every full moon high tide.

They should not only build a wall, they should build a really nice one. They should even look into an artificial reef offshore, but one thing at a time.

The whole seawall cost quandary is very much like that old joke about why divorce costs so much…

Because it’s worth it.

28468106_10156078944452510_7978948716729903201_n

Surf Check, 4/16/18

received_2075050832708327
We went to Duxbury and Marshfield to check out the waves from a mini nor’easter.
received_2075050759375001
Technically, it was some spelling of sou’easter, as winds came from the Southeast.
received_2075050816041662
You could call it “Southeast winds from a nor’easter way offshore,” because I have been writing this column long enough to know that some people get touchy about these designations.
received_2075050399375037
It wasn’t a bad storm, maybe a C or a C-.

received_2075036422709768

received_2075050692708341
We got to Fieldston, Ocean Bluff, Brant Rock, Green Harbor and Duxbury Beach.  That’s our author in the picture above, and Fieldston  (featuring Hardcore Logo) in the video below.

 

 

received_2075036409376436

received_2075036392709771
Two paths to Burke’s Beach above, and Ocean Bluff below.

 

received_2075050962708314
This storm was a minor test for the seawall repairs.
received_2075050756041668
The strong SE wind put the waves into SE-facing Green Harbor, and made life a bit easier for NE-facing Duxbury Beach.
received_2075050529375024
Duxbury residents had no choice but to fill in their yards after the major erosion of the March storms, violating the “don’t do yard repairs until late April” guideline.
received_2075050446041699
They seemed to hold up OK.
received_2075050442708366
You can see the value of a good seawall down in Green Harbor, in the background, or Brant Rock, below…

 

received_2075050399375037
As you can see, big boulders will be the order of the day until they replace the seawall.
20180416_122742
End of an era… the infamous Public Stairs have been destroyed.
20180416_121345
Homeboy had better get his Flag Game together.
20180416_115805
My assistants running away… Burke’s Beach/Green Harbor below

 

20180416_115736
Green Harbior has a sort of curve to it that makes it an optimal photo platform no matter where the storm winds are blowing in from…
20180416_115722
The storm was impressive enough to overwash the jetty at Green Harbor.
20180416_115715
The Brant Rock side of the channel took some shots, too.
20180416_115552
I go to the Green Harbor well more than once, but never too often. We also have more Brant Rock, below…

 

20180416_114708
Sometimes, you get a soaking on this job.
20180416_114647
Seagulls were doing some air-surfing over the waves.
20180416_113540
Brant Rock, I believe… and we finish at Duxbury Beach, below…

 

 

 

Houghs Neck

We love anything with water near it, so you know it was only a matter of time before we explored Houghs Neck.

No apostrophe needed. Hough’s Neck is somewhere else. Also, it’s pronounced like “Hows.” Pronouncing it like “coughs” will get you a beating from the locals, who otherwise are quite friendly. Don’t pronounce it like you are referencing multiple prostitutes, either.

It is named for Atherton Hough, who was the Mayor of Boston… Boston, England. He gave out the land grant, intending that the area be used as an orchard. The local elementary school is named for him, as well.

hn3
John Adams once used Houghs Neck as a departure point to get out of Massachusetts for a diplomatic mission without the British catching him.
hn4
I was born in Dorchester and spent part of my life in Quincy, but I live in the sticks now, and have been there long enough that this right here is about as close as I like to come to a city… or at least a city larger than New Bedford. It cuts both ways, too. I used to teach in the city, and I would bring the kids down to deserted Duxbury Beach to fish or do science projects now and then. They’d enjoy themselves, but never became too comfortable. “This is the kind of s*** that girl from The Ring hangs out in,” one student told me. “Black people generally have more sense than to come to places like this.”
hn2
Houghs Neck was once known as The Flounder Capital Of The World, as winter flounder do the cold weather months in Boston Harbor. They used to have 6 different boats taking people out to get the yummy little suckers. 
hn5
Houghs Neck was a summer resort area once, but it is far more residential today.
hn6
Houghs Neck is sort of wedged between Quincy Bay, Hingham Bay and the Fore River. They get barrier beach protection from Hull and from Peddocks Island.
hn7
Peddocks Island is visible to the right, it is the home to the now-defunct Fort Andrews.
hn8
It does make sense to advertise your ferry service right under the “You will die if you try to swim across” sign.
hn9
There is some debate as to where the Irish Riviera ends in the south… some say Marshfield, some say Plymouth, some say it’s the Cape… but there is very little debate as to where the Riviera begins in the north. There’s Boston, home of South Boston. Squantum, in the left foreground, sort of trades the title with Rexhame or Fieldston in Marshfield for “highest % of Irish.” Both are in the 60s. 
hn10
Residents are called “Neckers” or “Neck Birds,” and the area is known around Quincy as “God’s Country.” We’ll be back sometime to shoot the rest of the neighborhood.