In Volusia county, we are now in the midst of Dorian’s intermittent outer spiral rainbands — the elongated thunderstorm lines that rotate around the hurricane itself. These rainbands can carry with them heavy precipitation and wind — plenty of energy. On the outskirts of a hurricane, you can alternate between dry and wet air in a very short period of time — as a spiral rainband moves in, through, and out of your localized area.
In these photos, you can see North Peninsula State Park’s coastline just at the tail end of one such outer rainband. These photos were taken shortly before 11:45 today (very early on in our personalized Dorian-Experience). As you can see, the surf is already quite riled up — a few sets of waves making it to the narrow dune-line between the beach and A1A.
Also note the threaded lines of vegetation growing from the dunes outward to the ocean itself in the photos below. That’s Ipomoea pes-caprae, also known as the Goat’s foot convolvulus and/or the Beach morning glory, an invaluable plant species that helps maintain coastal structure. Coastal habitats are naturally adapted to warding off and minimizing the effects of coastal erosion from tropical storms and the like. Unfortunately, however, people have a habit of destroying such plant communities through development and recreation. The end result? More beach erosion resulting in costly restoration measures. We’ll see how this stretch of beach weathers the storm. It’s been hit quite heavily in the fifteen years or so.