The Salty

12/02/2016 - 14:49



The Salty is a vast sand and gravel bank in the Teign estuary created largely by dredging, it is encrusted with a wealth of mussels and cockles. Offering a plethora of vistas and abstractions to enjoy.


Teignmouth lies to the left and Shaldon to the right, with the Jurrasic sandstone escarpment of The Ness, behind



Around low tide it is easiy to wade (in wellington boots or sandals in the summer) across the southern channel (which I have painted in on the map below (as the Ordance survey map doesn't show this channel currently!). Take care if there have been recent heavy rains, as water around knee height at fast flow rates is enough to knock an adult over.





From the access point over the wall at the junction of Albion Street and Riverside walk North-North-East across the strandline until you see a small natural gravel weir, marked by a flow of tiny rapids and a 'wave-train'. Crossing the river on the upstream side of the slope here (sketched in red on the map above) through a foot and half deep water, is maybe the best way on to the island.


Plenty of colourful hues abound in the estuary on the bouys, hulls and houses



The estuary, especially at low tide, appears disproportionately large for the size of the River Tiegn flowing through it. The reason for this is because the estuary is a drowned valley (a geological formation known as a Ria), which was caused by a relative rise in sea level following the last Ice Age.



Looking West-North-West at low tide towards the colourful houses of Shaldon. The dark hills in the far disatnce are those of the southern edge of Dartmoor National Park. The mouth of the river here feels vast.



The curvaceous hulls of the yachts, which seem somehow more graceful in their dry state offer potential for abstracted photographs. Rusting chains, the plethora of mirror pools, shells, anchors, bouys and other chandlery accoutrements offer further interest to those wishing to make some 'inner landscape' photographs.





Across the main channel around The Salty, on its northern side, lies the Port of Teignmouth - which is not without visual interest, especially for the juxtaposed scales of watercraft.





The Salty is frequented by many sea birds and a particular favourite are the amusing Oystercatchers, I am yet to make a successful close up photograph of one, as they are smart enough to fly away as soon as I get anywhere near with my 200 mm (APS-c) telephoto lens! Either I need a gravel camouflage patterned outfit and/ or a Pentax 150-450mm lens (equivalent to 690mm on a full-frame camera).


It is an inviting and suprisingly large

place for a wander when the tide is out, offering vistas unobtainable from the main shorelines of the estuary and much else to explore on the island itself.




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