Clay balls and incoming tides

We have always lived by the coast and have a healthy respect for the sea. However, on a recent visit to Pourere Beach, near the Te Angi Angi Marine Reserve, even we got caught out by the tides.

Clay balls and incoming tides

There is a marvellous long, curved spit sheltering a lagoon and there we were right out near the end, admiring the sea grass and playing in the deep rock pools, when I suddenly noticed the waves breaking over the rocky spit between us and the beach. Eek! I finally convinced the kids that we were in imminent danger of swimming back to shore and with squeals of excitement/ relief/ panic we scampered and waded back through the water onto the beach. Phew! Emptying our wellies, we watched as the rocky spit end where we had been playing obliviously got completely cut off by the tide. A very close call!

Back on the beach, we discovered the marvels of clay seams in the sand. It squeezed between toes, caked fingers and clothes and coated the no longer white puppy. Ramona decided to make a Sea Boggard to watch over us and combed the beach for eyes, teeth and crazy hair. Eomer was captivated by the clay boulders and became delightfully sticky climbing over and around them, exploring the different textures as they became wet and slippery or sticky and dry.

Spotty Otter gear kept us warm and dry with the showers and the clay washed down well at home. Eomer still loves his waterproof dungarees as they keep his tummy cosy – perfect for clambering over clay balls and running from incoming tides!

I remember one of my first ever blog posts was about beach treasure in Ilfracombe. Here, in the Pacific Ocean, there is very little sea glass but instead there is a wealth of new shells to discover. Pourere beach is a treasure trove of Paua shells, from whole curved glories to broken sparkles hidden in the sand. So it was finally that we left the beach with our pockets full, our feet and fingers fully clayed (with sand engrained for good measure) and a lesson learnt in renewed respect for the sea.

Never take your eyes off the water, people, especially in a wild land such as this with earthquakes and potentially imminent tsunamis - yikes ;)

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About the Author

Ruth Lively-Masters

Ruth Lively-Masters

About Me & Mine

Having lived in N. Devon for the last 12 years, we recently moved across to the other side of the world and now live in New Zealand on the North Island. Our adventurous family includes my husband Phil and 2 small cheeky children: Ramona 8½ and Eomer 5½. I have a wonderful day job as Lead teacher in the sensory unit of an SEN school and spend as much time as possible outside, exploring nature and environments both on our doorstep and further afield.

Favourite place in the world:

Hmm, that's really tough! I loved the west coast forests of British Columbia in Canada, such a humbling, incredible place - tall trees right down to the big ocean waves. There's a whole lot of other places I'd love to explore though...moving to New Zealand has opened up a whole world of new adventures and we’re slowly finding new favourites to add to the list.

Sea, mountains and forests in any combination please!

Favourite things to do outdoors:

Again, lots of favourites. Definitely a mix between walking, cycling, surfing, camping and exploring, combined with taking time to notice detail of a place, hear the sounds and absorb the changes over time and seasons. Active and quiet times are both invigorating for different reasons.

Comments (1)

  • Jay Greengrass

    Jay Greengrass

    13 June 2017 at 13:48 | #

    Aiee, that was a bit close! Easy done though, as you say. What a brilliant boulder Eomer's clutching - so round, like a massive dinosaur egg. And I've never heard of Sea Boggards before, though that cool photo of Ramona's one gives me a clue.


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