A cold dawn in Lyme Regis

The weather forecasters have been making doom-laden pronouncements of arctic air for some days now. After an unusually mild autumn, we are finally remembering the normal temperature for this time of year – ‘a bit parky’ as they say. So, wrapped up warmly, I spent a while on the Church Cliff Beach at Lyme this morning.

A cold clear night had given way to a bright sunny morning, and the photos I took are all bathed in clear golden light. So, what caught my eye?

First, the extraordinary sea-smoothed surfaces of the rock armour. These boulders are normally larvikite, but I think the ones here may be gabbro or a similar mafic igneous rock, as they are very close-grained and don’t have the iridescent labradorite crystals typical of larvikite. Anyway, whatever their provenance, they look very striking in the low sun, still wet from the falling tide.

Then the clumps of seaweed stranded on the sand – it was calm today, but recent storms have obviously uprooted a lot.

And on the way home, the still water in the dimples of the rock platform, and some lovely cirrus-like patterns where the sand was drying as the tide fell – not something I’ve noticed before.

Church Cliff Beach, Lyme Regis, Dorset, England, United Kingdom