Fire And Ice: A Frigid Icy Morning And Fiery Sunrise At Ship Bottom, Long Beach Island.

Fire And Ice: A Frigid Icy Morning And Fiery Sunrise At Ship Bottom, Long Beach Island.

Long Beach Island morning beach (20 of 50)
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The blizzard was over.  I awoke to find the town of Ship Bottom still  asleep.  I looked out at a frigid  winter wonderland  from my hotel window on Long Beach Island, New Jersey.  I was anxious to explore the streets of this  seaside community after the blizzard. .  I wanted to watch the sunrise  on the snow covered beach. After  a quick cup of coffee, I  changed into my  arctic winter cloths, I would need them, and headed outside.  

When I left the warmth of my hotel, and stepped outside,  I found a frozen and frigid  world. The clear, blue twilight skies contrasted with the  snow that  covered the island like a white blanket.

The temperature was a frigid 11 degrees. There was  a blustery northwesterly wind. It was bitterly cold. Although I am used to this type of weather from my Winter hikes in the woodlands near my home in Northeastern Pennsylvania, it was not a pleasant hike. And not one I would expect to take at the Jersey shore. 

What surprised me as I began my hike, was the condition of the roads. Route 72, the only access road to the island, was open and almost  completely snow  and ice free!

And the side streets of Ship Bottom  were plowed too. I found this to be quite an accomplishment and  give a lot of  credit to the  road crews of  the town of Ship Bottom. I thought they would take days to clear the snow the blizzard dumped on the island  and then was blown around by the fierce winds that followed the storm.  Good job guys! I was glad I didn’t have to trudge though 2 foot drifts to get to the ocean like I did on Saturday morning. But, it was a blizzard, and the side roads were still snow covered and icy. One still had to be careful walking. I walked the deserted  E. 7th street in the cold morning twilight,

and made my way to Long Beach Boulevard. It too was open but also snow covered. 

After crossing the deserted  Boulevard, I had yet to see a car or person no my hike, I  walked  to the E. 7th Street Beach access. I had   used  the E. 8th street access on Saturday. On the steps,  which were buried in the snow, I saw  tracks made  by some other folks who must have struggled to the top  to get a view of the snow covered ocean. I was thankful and  followed in their footsteps. 

The view was beautiful and worth braving the frigid early morning  wind and cold. 

I took in the spectacular beauty of the snow covered dunes,

and beach. Here is a video of this scene I uploaded to my YouTube channel.

The sun was about to rise and I hurried down to the beach.

It wasn’t easy since  there were some deep wind blown snow drifts. 

But the effort was worth it. The wind blown snow  drifts and formations were intricate and amazing. Here is  another video I took at the beach.

The sun soon rose over the Atlantic Ocean . It was bitterly  cold, but this  wonderful scene  confirmed my decision to  travel to the shore and experience the blizzard and it’s aftermath. The fiery ball of the rising sun contrasted the frozen ice and snow  formations along the shore. 

I have seen the sunrise on all of our oceans but I have  never seen a sunrise or sunset I didn’t like.  Like snowflakes they are are so alike yet each is unique. Here is a link to another video  of the sunrise.

A strong wind still swirled on the beach.  After watching the sunrise I  didn’t remain in  one spot, as I would have  on warm Summer day, but decided to walk  along the beach to keep warm.   The cold wasn’t the only difference from a warm Summer walk on  the beach. Along  the edge of the snow drifts was a line of snow and ice that marked the high tide mark where the snow and ocean water met. 

I carefully walked  over the ice and snow and onto the frozen beach.  

I was hoping to photograph some shore bird. There were a lot of sea gulls active on the beach in the raging ocean  as the blizzard ended on Saturday.  It appeared they were feeding on some sea creatures churned up by the raging waves. However, on Sunday morning there weren’t   many birds flying along the beach in the frigid  morning sunshine. In fact, there were very few. I only saw a couple of  herring gulls, 

this  ring-billed gull and 

this great black-backed gull. 

I also saw this poor bird  shivering on the sand on the beach. It was a lone female bufflehead duck. It sat motionless as I approached. It looked cold. However, when I got to close it quickly flew off an landed on the frigid ocean. 

The early morning sun rose in the east and provided some warmth  as I walked up and down the beach looking for shore birds and seashells. There were a few seashells , 

and  lot of  discarded crab legs. I am guessing that they came from crabs  the seagulls were feasting on  in the churning sea on Saturday.  Although I was captivated  by the beauty of the Winter beach scene I was freezing and decided, reluctantly, it was time to leave. Here is one last video from my walk on the beach .

As I was leaving the beach,  I finally saw some other folks venturing down to  take in this beautiful scene. 

This family was walking through the snow drifts in the distance. I watched as the walked to the water’s edge and quickly turned around and headed back. I don’t blame them, it was  cold.  I can’t share all of my photos here in this blog post so  please check out this gallery on my  website. There are so many photos of the beauty I observed on the Ship Bottom beach.  Here is the link  . Long Beach Island sunrise January 30 2022. 

I walked back to the beach access ramp and ventured back onto the  snow covered town of Ship Bottom. 

The northwesterly wind was now blowing in my face as I walked across Long Island Boulevard. The sun reflected off the newly fallen, powdery snow. 

I continued back up E. 7th Street and begin zigzagging on the streets so as to avoid walking  straight into the biting winds. 

Like on my Saturday walk, it was odd  to see the beach houses covered in snow. 

And,  as I did on my previous hike, I  again  made my way to the bay side of the island . On Saturday there was no ice on the waters of the bay.  I was surprised to see that much of the bay was now frozen solid. 

And I  discovered why there weren’t a lot of shore birds at the beach. They were huddled on the frozen  waters of the bay trying to keep warm. This is a flock of Canada geese, 

and this one of many herring gulls I saw  huddled up on the frozen waters of the bay.

I left the bay and continued my five mile walk through the streets of Ship Bottom. 

Along the way I saw a few more birds  feeding on  berrie of I believe a cedar tree ,  there were a few American robins and

yellow-rumped warblers. 

I also saw this herring gull that decided to leave the frozen waters of the bay and land on a snow covered roof in town . Here is a link to a gallery with some more photographs of the birds I saw on my walk. Long Beach Island walk birds January 30 2022. 

I had  completed my usual five mile walk  so I made my way back to the hotel,

walking past some more snow removal  work, The town of Ship Bottom was doing a great jobs keeping the roads open. Here is a link to another gallery with some more photos from my frigid morning hike. Long Beach Island hike January 30 2022  

It was a frigid, but  interesting,  hike through the streets of Ship Bottom. I  enjoyed seeing the beach town covered in snow.  And I was treated to not only the sight of snow on the beach but also  a spectacular sunrise. It was a wonderful visit. I was very pleased I decided to drive to the  Jersey and watch Nature unleash it’s fury on the coast. I do not wish for these storms to occur, they do cause damage and hardship to the folks who experience them. But I have no control over them.  So ,  hopefully,  not for a long time,  I will visit again to experience the fury of  next coastal blizzard. Thanks for allowing me to share this experience with you! 

“I was cold and you were fire, and I never knew how the pyre could be burning on the edge of an ice field”. –  Meat Loaf

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