Sandfly Bay

The name’s not about sandflies, but about the sand, that flies. Once you are there and walk down the endless dunes, you’ll understand. That evening, sand was coming out of every trousers, sock, shoe, backpack,  pore, ear, nose or hairdo we’d had with us. Not there was any hairdo after that windy beach … the sea lions loved it, saw a lot of them. Didn’t stay for the yellow eyed pinguins though.

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Breezes and currents create – Sand is carried along the coast by ocean currents and deposited on the beach by wave action. Onshore breezes blow dry sand inland where it gets trapped around sand-loving pikao and non-native marram grass.

Dunes form when layers of sand accumulate during settled weather, layered patterns can be found everywhere in the dunes.

Storm waves at high tide erode sand from the bottom dunes, until they become unstable and collapse. Blustery winds funnel between tall and narrow dunes, stripping sand from their sides.

Eventually, all that’s left are large flat areas of bare sand – like the one seen fromthe lookout. Pikao is well- suited to these shifting sands but, while pikao is rare, bare sand remains.

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