Sunday, August 19, 2012

Beach Marbles

Lots of Beach Rocks

Why is it almost impossible to find a perfectly round rock? There are lots of ’rounded’ rocks, and you can find rocks that are perfectly round but flat, but try to find just one that is a perfect sphere; almost impossible.

I call it the search for the perfect beach marble. It is very hard to find a round rock, even harder to find ones  the size of a marble. Why is that?

Someone once told me that the odds of finding a rock on a beach that had actually been worn into a perfect sphere was virtually impossible. He claimed that it would have had to start out close to a perfect cube so that as it was washed and rolled about by the waves and water the corners would slowly get worn down until it was round.

Whenever I visit a rocky beach, I search for my perfect beach marble. I haven’t found one yet. I have a few almost round beach rocks, but not one actually round, and nothing marble sized.

My theory? There are actually lots of round rocks. The continual motion of the waves works to round all rocks to perfect spheres. It is just that as soon as a rock becomes an exact round shape, the ’roundness’ exerts itself, and one of the guiding principles of a sphere takes over and it begins to roll. As we know, anything that rolls, naturally rolls down hill.

Almost round . . .
So . . . once the perfect beach marble achieves roundness, the motion of the waves rolls it not back and forth, but just ’forth’; always down hill. Yup, somewhere in the deepest of ocean trenches, unexplored by mankind, lie thousands of perfectly round rocks. Scattered among them are my elusive ’beach marbles’.

But, the search continues. One day I will come across a rock just as it loses that bit that kept it from being truly round but before it begins it’s journey down. 

1 comment:

  1. I read this blog on our way home from Nanaimo. What is so strange(?) is that I didn't know you were looking for a perfectly round beach stone! I've been looking for one for years (without success, I might add) here on the west coast. Novah and I were at the beach for 2 hours last Monday searching!