Exploring Sea Glass at Crystal Cove
March has brought some much-needed rain to Crystal Cove Sate Park. While rainy weather may put a damper on your beach day plans, the days immediately following a storm are some of the best times to visit the beach for those looking for sea glass! When storms hit our coastline, the larger waves carry sand away from the beach, exposing the pebbly layer underneath. It’s in this layer of small rocks that you’re likely to find smooth shards of glass glinting in the sunlight.
The colorful jewels you find on the beach began their lives as ordinary glass on land, most commonly beer or soda bottles, but occasionally as old medicine bottles, decorative glassware, or old car lights. While some originate from trash on the beach, many travel for miles downstream before making it to the ocean. Once at the sea, the wave action, sand, salt, and rocks all work together to shape the trash into something beautiful. Because they are technically trash, sea glass isn’t subject to the regulations of the Marine Protected Area and is fair game to collect in Crystal Cove, unlike rocks and shells.
The majority of glass you will find on the beach is brown, white, and green, all colors common for beverage bottles. If you’re truly lucky or dedicated to the hunt, you may stumble upon a seafoam green, from a Coca Cola bottle, a cobalt blue, from an old milk of magnesia bottle, or the ever-elusive red piece from pre-1950 car or ship lights.
Searching for sea glass is all about knowing where and when to look. Join us on March 31st at our Art in the Park Celebration and learn tips and tricks from our very own sea glass expert, Rick Boufford on a sea glass walk! Afterwards, learn how to turn your finds into one-of-a-kind jewelry. Registration is free, but spots are limited! Sign up here.