A chilly new year

We made our first visit of 2016 on a chilly, slightly drizzly January Sunday morning.

We were expecting a low of 0.37, so we were expecting to be able to see at least some of the prehistoric timbers in front of MI6. This was a fairly short visit, just a reccee really, to see what we could see.

The tide was already pretty far out in front of MI6, so we were able to have a look at the first large timber.

2

A lot of the bark has been stripped off by the wave action but it’s not in any danger. Looking at the top of the timber, there seem to be what look like chop marks in it. We wondered if it had been used as a chopping block in the past.

1

The tide was quite far out in the area around this timber so we waded out a bit to look for some timbers that we haven’t been able to see in a while.

3

Under the water we could see three of the known timbers.

5

Ok, it was practically impossible to get photos that showed them all, but Roger helpfully indicated their positions. He’s standing right by the larger central timber and pointing directly at the other two.

4

Incidentally, this shows just how nice and clear the water is around here. It does cloud up with silt when the Clippers go past, but the water is often this clear, usually with very little floating rubbish in it. Those Thames Rubbish Eaters do a good job.

We weren’t able to see any of the other mesolithic timbers closer to the bridge because, although the tide did go out a fairly long way, the tide line has become increasingly uneven, perhaps due to erosion at different points. The level of low tide closer to the bridge was actually much higher than down near Lack’s Dock.

6

Just after the above photo was taken we realised that the tide had turned and was rushing in so quickly that we had to sprint to rescue our bags before they disappeared under the water. The tide actually came in so quickly that by the time we walked back to the first timber (only about 6o metres) the water had reached right up to it.

Cappuccinos called, so we went off to the Portuguese cafe to warm up.

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