Erosion claims glacial arch at Lucy Vincent Beach

Erosion claims glacial arch at Lucy Vincent Beach

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The arch formed by erosion of the Lucy Vincent Beach cliffs collapsed on Sunday. — Photo by Steve Myrick

The dramatic erosion of the iconic cliffs on Lucy Vincent Beach advanced over the weekend when the arch formed in the glacial deposit collapsed.

The last remaining freestanding column also appears to be in imminent danger of collapse, as several large cracks have formed at its base. Waves pummel the base of the natural structure at high tide.

The erosion intensified during the winter of 2012-2013, when two powerful winter storms battered the south shore of Martha’s Vineyard.

Chilmark town officials warn that the area around the eroding cliffs is hazardous, and ask visitors not to climb on, or stand near the cliffs.

Click “more photos” above to compare pictures of the cliffs on Monday, to pictures from last winter.


        1. Nature operates on a kind of “punctuated equlibrium,” (Steven Jay Gould’s term, not mine); much like baseball. Things are quiet, even boring, and then all hell breaks loose.

  1. Last summer I went inside “the cave” several times to photograph it’s awesome formations. I said to myself “God, I hope this doesn’t just cave in on me or someone else” Well, thank God it didn’t!

    1. That cave always terrified me, for years. Glad no one was hurt but if this were August….

    2. The cave WAS off limits. Thanks for not following the rules, ONCE AGAIN, Peter Simon.

      1. Sorry….never saw a sign in front of the cave….also, I don’t take anonymous posts very seriously.

          1. some people don;t get it. Although I suffer from many fears, I seem to become fearless (not reckless) when I have a camera in my hand.

  2. A big change in the cliff was due to hurricane Sandy, which preceded two strong Winter storms