Our beach, after the storm that rendered it impassable a couple days ago.

Beach, Atlántida, Uruguay, after the big storm of 2016-10

Lots of trash, very wide, and where the dunes gently sloped, walls.

Beach, Atlántida, Uruguay, after the big storm of 2016-10

I didn’t walk up near the dunes, since a certain dog wants me throwing a stick into the water the entire time, but some of the cuts appear 3 m (10 ft) high.

Dead crab on beach, Atlántida, Uruguay, after the big storm of 2016-10

An unusually large dead crab — shell probably 12 cm (5″) across.

The storm hit worse, however, farther east.

October 2016 Uruguay cyclone

Fortunately our friends’ house in Aguas Dulces (Sweet Waters seems a tad ironic now) was not harmed, but it is reported that 50 houses were destroyed there. You can see one of them going down in this 12-second video).

Storm, Aguas Dulces, Uruguay, October 2016
Photo source, Aguas Dulces: “In 30 years, I’ve never seen anything like this.”

If you review my photos from Aguas Dulces in June 2015, you’ll sense my fascination with previously abandoned and destroyed habitations. Building at the edge of the sea involves risk.

Our friends had recently spent about USD 10,000 to install a complex system of boulders, plastic sheeting, and sand bags in front of their place to protect it. Had they not, they might not now have their California-dream ocean-front house.

We hope to go back soon with them (invited next weekend but have to hang around here, in hope window installers will show up). Meanwhile, I think I can safely assume that the first picturesque stilted house in my little photo essay will not present another photo op.

  1. arte
    Oct 29, 2016

    Guess i missed the june ’15 series (beautiful, btw). Kudos for documentation, and the creepily prescient pirate warning.

    Who is Game, and one wonders if his (her?) establishment of ownership survived?

    Since i am distressingly far away, and our home is near La Barra – looks like we were side swiped. We’ve heard no bad news from friends… so it’s either okay or completely unutterable.

    Reply
    • Doug
      Oct 31, 2016

      “Completely unutterable” – LOL. I’m sure you’re fine.

      Reply
  2. Paul
    Oct 30, 2016

    Very nice post Doug, same at our beach.

    People around the world do and love it that way,
    sitting with their butt in the ocean and wondering while
    they are washed away. Everyone’s own responsibility.

    In German we have a saying:

    Wer nicht hinschaut,
    sondern auf Sand baut
    und auf Sand vertraut,
    hat bald sein Haus versaut.

    Of course the English translation doesn’t rhyme very well.

    Who doesn’t look,
    But build on sand
    And trust the sand,
    Has soon messed up (using “f” word here would be better) his house.

    Reply
    • Doug
      Oct 31, 2016

      In summer 1961, after Hurricane Donna the previous fall, I remember going from my grandmother’s house in eastern Long Island with my family in our motorboat, and seeing an elegant 3-story shingle-style “summer cottage” torn from the dunes and plunked in Moriches Bay. Quite a sight!

      Reply
  3. Paul
    Nov 01, 2016

    We have seen the similar, like in Australia
    or Myrtle Beach SC, it looks horrible
    and is devastating for the owners.
    But they all know before and still want to
    be close to the ocean. Thinking:
    “It won’t happen to me”!

    Met an owner yesterday who has a damage
    (told me about 70%) to his weekend house,
    in Antoniopolis.
    His comment was: “Bad luck – then we have
    to rebuild it again, second time.”
    He also told me that along the coast are stronger
    regulations the last few years, many houses are
    illegal anyhow – I don’t know if it’s true.

    Reply
    • Doug
      Nov 01, 2016

      http://bit.ly/2dYBi2Q Video about the destruction of illegal houses in Punta del Diablo in 2011, that were built illegally on public land.

      Reply