(May 12, 2022) … Every heavy storm surge exposes the cypress knees and stumps on the drive on beach at navy crossing just below the great dune. Usually a few are exposed in the tide pools, as the waves dig out around the cypress knees’ root system. The root systems are complex and hold fast.
It has been a while since I’ve seen nearly all of the stumps and the marsh bed too. Sandy exposed that area but it was only there for a couple of days if that. Today most of the cypress knees were exposed. Wild looking shapes. Navy lost over ten feet of vertical sand height it seems.
These pools always fill in fast so this won’t last long. These are in what is usually the swale area of the beach. The nor’easter moved a tremendous amount of sand into the sand bar system. There is even a huge piece of old pipe or a pole laying among the stumps. Probably a remnant of Fort Miles. It’s big enough to be a gun barrel.
The knees are worn down into beautiful unique shapes. Some are very artistic looking. Inside many of the knees are deposits of sand and shells. The exposed marsh bed is clay and old peat.The Stumps At Navy Crossing
There are small spike like pieces of root (knee) sticking up that could impale a foot. The wood is still very much solid and strong. Cypress doesn’t rot, it does wear into wild shapes though. Water and sand have shaped these cypress knees for a long time.
A few knees broke loose or were uprooted. I could see someone came in with a wheelbarrow and hauled them off. There were three loose ones the day before, now there is only one. The driftwood formations are beautiful and will last forever. I found one a few years ago on the point.
The exposed marsh bed just shows how all of our beaches are just sand piled on an old marsh bed. Tens of thousands of years ago humans could walk to the canyons off the coast. Today the beach is now way back here in comparison. Amazing seeing what is under our sand sometimes. Cypress knees exposed in Dewey Beach still have the complex root systems, The Stumps At Navy Crossing