Tides

photo Paul Kurbis

One of the reasons for the establishment of a lighthouse is to mark the dangers from the effect of extreme tides (low and high) on surrounding lands, islands, waterways, and beaches. 

Look at the photo on the left of my old lighthouse at McInnes Island at low tide (click for a larger version). We can tell it is low tide because the kelp is exposed on the rocks, and the high tide mark on the rocks is marked by a dirty black line. Here on the Pacific Coast of Canada, the tides come in and go out twice a day, and the range is between seventeen (17) and twenty-one (21) feet (6 to 7 meters)!

Note the small rock at dead center, bottom of the photo. At high tide that would be covered and become a menace to navigation. In this case this is not a marked shipping channel so no marker is necessary. The reason for the lighthouse (visible on the left of the large island) is that it was listed as a landfall light. A marker for ships coming in from the Pacific Ocean to the British Columbia coastline, and also a marker for the entrance to Milbanke Sound. It really doesn’t mark the island as dangerous; just an indicator of a mariner’s location on the ocean.

Example of a floating dock

To return to a docked boat on the BC coast after a few hours of sightseeing or shopping is sometimes a surprise for many tourists. The docks for the boats are built to float up and down on fixed pilings to accommodate the 21 foot tides (see photo left). To get onto the dock you walk up or down a ramp. A roller on the lower end rolls along the dock as the tide rises or falls. The top part of the ramp is hinged.

The tides change approximately every six hours, so if you left your boat and walked up the steep ramp to the topside dock at 10 AM (low tide) and came back at 2 PM (4 hours difference), the ramp would be almost horizontal (high tide). If you had lots of heavy groceries to move it was always a good idea to plan at what time of day you wanted to move them! Continue reading

Reprint – Photo Gallery: Sutton Bridge Lighthouse Renovation Restores View Which Inspired Sir Peter Scott

Work continues on the Peter Scott Lighthouse near Sutton Bridge - owners Sue and Doug Hilton. Picture: Matthew Usher.

Photo gallery: Sutton Bridge lighthouse renovation restores view which inspired Sir Peter Scott

By DAISY WALLAGE Monday, July 30, 2012
– with permission from EDP24 online

With an endless sky, tantalising glimpses of the The Wash and wildfowl flying overhead, this stunning, sometimes lonely view was lost for decades as time took its toll on east bank lighthouse at Sutton Bridge.

Now, after months of loving restoration, visitors can finally climb to the top and bask in the uninterrupted views that so inspired the artist and conservation pioneer Sir Peter Scott more than 70 years ago.

The view from the top. Picture: Matthew Usher.

Owners Sue and Doug Hilton bought the lighthouse, on the mouth of the River Nene, in November 2010 and are steadily achieving their goal of opening a museum and visitor centre at the site as well as restoring the landmark tower itself.

New, locally crafted steel handrails on the lighthouse stairs will allow visitors to explore beyond Sir Peter’s living room to his second floor bedroom and the lamp room during a series of open weekends next month. Continue reading

Three More Lighthouses Saved! Sadly not Canadian

New status shines light on landmark from UK News Guardian

Published on Thursday 10 May 2012 09:29

A coastal landmark on the borough coastline has been declared a listed building to help preserve it for future generations.

St Mary's lighthouse

St Mary’s Lighthouse, a popular destination for sightseers and school trips, has been given grade II-listed status by English Heritage.

The 19th century tower and adjoining cottages host more than 80,000 visitors a year.

Officials at English Heritage decided to list the lighthouse, keeper’s and fishermen’s cottages because of their historic and architectural interest.

A spokesperson for English Heritage said: “The late 19th century lighthouse and associated cottages have been designated at grade II. More ->

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