The winter has been a difficult one with serious erosion occurring all along Cape Cod National Seashore. At least four major storms with high winds and lasting several days have pounded the shoreline. A full moon resulting in higher than normal tides added to the fury.
The stairs at Marconi Beach in Wellfleet (photo 1) and Eastham's Nauset Light Beach near the lighthouse (photos 2 & 3), as well as part of the walkway at Coast Guard Beach, were washed away during the last storm of Friday, February 26 to Monday, March 1, 2010. In addition, the bicycle bridge connecting the bicycle path from Salt Pond Visitor Center to Coast Guard Beach was washed over. It is now unsafe and must be replaced.
Nauset Light was moved in 1996 because it was less than 35 feet from the edge of the cliff. Immediately after the move, a 4'' x 4'' post was put in the ground marking where the center of the light once was. Due to the continuing erosion of the shoreline during the last 13-1/2 years, the post is now a foot or less from the edge of the cliff. It is expected that it will disappear soon.
As can be seen in the last photo, had the lighthouse not been moved, it would have been dismantled and taken away long ago. Thanks to the many members, friends, and supporters of the Nauset Light Preservation Society who contributed funds to move it, Nauset Light is safely away from the edge of the cliff and is still shining brightly. Ongoing support of NLPS is crucial to its ability to keep the lighthouse lit and maintained.