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Modern Mysteries

Missing Irish beach reappears after 30 years

By T.K. Randall
May 7, 2017 · Comment icon 13 comments

Most of the sand vanished more than 30 years ago. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 2.0 Graham Horn
A beach that was stripped of its sand three decades ago has suddenly been restored to its former glory.
The picturesque beach near Dooagh village on Achill Island, Ireland was once a popular tourist attraction which helped to sustain four hotels and numerous guesthouses in the local area.

This all changed in the summer of 1984 however when, for reasons that remain unclear, the entire beach was washed away by the tide, leaving nothing but an expanse of bare rock.
Now though, more than three decades after the beach was stripped bear, thousands of tons of sand and pebbles have been deposited back along the shoreline, restoring the beach to its former glory.

"It's enormously significant," said Sean Molloy of local tourism firm Achill Tourism. "Achill already has five blue-flag beaches, so we are hoping that in time it will be awarded a sixth."

Whether the sand will actually stick around this time however remains to be seen.

Source: Irish Times | Comments (13)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #4 Posted by Tom the Photon 7 years ago
We were backpacking through the Pacific, island-hopping and drinking heavily. We found a gorgeous spot on a Fijian island with soft white sand, palm trees and cheap bars. One day we woke to find the whole beach missing - washed away by a storm in the night. The locals said this was a regular event, and sure enough it returned layer by layer over the next week. But where has all this Irish sand been waiting for 33 years and how suddenly did it return?
Comment icon #5 Posted by back to earth 7 years ago
Thats right  Astra  !  You go  right ahead and ruin another Unexplained Mystery !     
Comment icon #6 Posted by back to earth 7 years ago
Well, strange as it may seem , the sand on a beach can continue out  into  and under the waves .   Thats right, just out there on the bottom, can be  .........     stores of sand !         Some of it even moves up and down the coast !          
Comment icon #7 Posted by Astra. 7 years ago
Comment icon #8 Posted by wahmeiman 7 years ago
Blame the chemtrails or possibly a bent moon tide.
Comment icon #9 Posted by Tom the Photon 7 years ago
I asked if anyone knows how suddenly this sand reappeared?  The story suggests it happened very rapidly, so I was wondering what sort of unusual conditions had to occur to deposit this much sand so quickly.  A sudden change in a nearby river flow disturbing sediments?  A freak giant wave?  Minor earth tremor or underground landslide?  Fluctuations in deep ocean currents?  Everyone's favourite bogeyman: global warming?  Or - if this is a commonplace occurrence - are there precedents we could study and learn from?
Comment icon #10 Posted by docyabut2 7 years ago
There are a lot of beaches that reappear in history. discovering  towns and cities after the last ice age when the waters gradually rose 200 ft  
Comment icon #11 Posted by Hammerclaw 7 years ago
Not exactly Gene Kelly and Brigadoon.  
Comment icon #12 Posted by The Silver Thong 7 years ago
Sounds fishy to me
Comment icon #13 Posted by stereologist 7 years ago
Sand is transported by waves moving towards and away from land. Large waves move sand seaward. Smaller waves movie it landward. Sediments also move along a shoreline. It moves from sources. If there is a blockage to the source such as a dammed river, then sediments do not arrive from the source but transport along the coast continues to occur. This could be anything from a difference in the wave actions such as a milder winter, or a change at a river supplying the sediments.

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