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Outer Banks Guide > Outer Banks Blogs > Eve Turek's Natural Outer Banks Blog

Saturday, August 22, 2015
When the Tide Turns
Experienced fishermen (and surfers—and beachcombers) know to watch for the turn of the tide. When I wrote the phrase “when the tide turns” in my morning journal recently, I realized there is a definitive moment when the tide literally turns, when ebb imperceptibly ends and flood begins. In that instant, even the most alert might not notice the change. The water’s movement five minutes on either side of the tidal shift looks similar. Hindcast or fast-forward 35 minutes, or 65, and the changes become obvious.

I think I am—I think many of us are—living out that experience when the tide has turned even though we don’t necessarily see ample evidence of the magnitude of the shift yet. After all, I’m not yet comparing lowest ebb with highest rise of tide; I’m just noticing that the water seems to be coming in a little stronger, a little higher, wave on wave.

I notice tide change photographically, and I notice tidal shifts in my daily life experience. So I thought it might be fun to illustrate the concept—you will see some results below.

Of course, I’m not always focused at my feet! I went to the ocean for the latest release of Green Sea Turtles that were cold-stunned in last winter’s freeze, and spent several months recuperating in the NC Aquarium STAR center. I did not have a decent vantage point to photograph the release but the way the sun broke through the storm-cloud cover was pure wonder. I walked back to my car in the company of fellow photographer Roy Ellund, aka OBX Beach Bum, and he snapped a quick photograph of me clicking my shutter. He’s been gracious to allow me to share the image so I though readers here might appreciate seeing it too. That’s twice in the past month someone has taken a photograph of the photographer!

A few days before, the clouds in the afternoon drew me seaward, and the breakers were clean and green. One of the last series of wave breaks I photographed had a big backsplash, as if the wind and tide were at opposite directions just for those few seconds. When I saw the sequence on my monitor, I realized the ocean had given me yet another “sea heart.” I just love pointing hearts out to folks who have not noticed their presence. Truly, they are everywhere.

The sea oats are beginning to turn from their earlier blooming green to a more golden hue, and I always enjoy seeking out new vantage points to include sea-oat clad dunes in my late-summer and early-fall seascapes. I had a restless night not long ago and was awake before dawn, so I got up, stopped at Jennette’s Pier for the official sunrise (clouds were on the horizon) and then drove south to Pea Island. The skies kept getting lovelier all morning instead of less so, thanks to the clouds. I’ve visited those same dunes several times in the past month, from dawn to dusk. I am fascinated with the way the color of the light influences the look of a scene and my own emotional response. Here you have the gamut, from soft, gentle serene mornings to over-the-top dramatic skies and seas, to warm, happy, easy-breezy summer afternoons. Enjoy.

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Sometimes the loveliest color is found by looking down, not up. Sunrise shimmer on Ocracoke.

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The patterns the water makes as the tide rushes in and recedes fascinate me.

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I photographed these tide pool patterns on a soon-to-be-stormy-again afternoon in Frisco.

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I call this Seaglass Surf. The deep green of the ocean juxtaposed against the dark blue sky caught my breath.

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Here's what I looked like from photographer Roy Edlund's (theobxbeachbum) perspective.

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Hearts are everywhere... at least, to my heart and eye.

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Sea Oats near dawn...

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Sea oats in the afternoon...

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Sea oats at dusk...

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Sand fence remnants, standing like sentinels watching over the sea.

posted by eturek at 3:43 PM

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(c) 2009-2010 Eve Turek & OBX Connection, all rights reserved - read 388385 times

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