Tuesday, October 18, 2011

And when it rains on your parade, look up rather than down. Without the rain, there would be no rainbow. Gilbert K. Chesterton

The elements are conspiring to keep me off the beach.  I arrived home from the Poconos chomping at the bit to get some sand between my toes.  Due to an outbreak of red tide on Manasota Key it is wise to stay away from the beach.  Breathing the toxic air surrounding an algae bloom & the resulting dead fish washed up on the shoreline can result in non-stop coughing, watering eyes, & lingering effects for those who have compromised breathing issues.

 Today we have a tropical low just sitting off the SWFL coast.  We are enjoying the much needed rain.  Hopefully, It takes care of the red tide and pushes it way off shore. For those folks who make their livings on the Gulf of Mexico it means a few days of down time. TEB's favorite shell guide Capt. Brian took the rainy days to organize his back porch.  I too have been cleaning & organizing some closets. (although the shells on Capt. Brian's back porch look like way more fun than my old clothes) Once this rain & red tide are past us there are some awesome, I mean awesome negative low tides on the calender for the end of November & December.

This is what the tide charts look like from the Tide Graph V2.4 app when it is installed on your smart phone. The tides in red text are minus lows.

Give it a try.  The widget is interactive.

The Tide Graph V2.4 is a great way to track the tides any where in the continental US.  This app for your smart phone is really awesome for tracking the tides. Drag the circle over to see the tide change hourly. Click the map box to change locations. If you install the app on your smart phone you can  click on tables to see an entire month. Notice on the monthly tides the minus low tides are in red.  Isn't that better than playing Angry Birds!  The tropical lows wash in some amazing shells once the rain stops.  That first low tide after the Gulf of Mexico stops churning can be a bonanza.  Planning a shelling excursion can be all that much better by learning how to time the tides.

PS - Check out the new addition to the right sidebar that says "Mote Marine".  You can check the conditions of almost any beach on SWFL.