Cast Away on Pleasure Beach

I have a short article on Pleasure Beach, accompanied by two of my photos, in this month’s Connecticut Magazine.

In early July I paddled out to Pleasure Beach to take the photographs. It was my first approach by water, and as such, my first up-close experience with the peninsula’s western shore. There was the usual trash — bottles, plastic bags, wrappers, unmatched flip-flops — but I was astounded by the large items thrown onto the beach. Fifty-five-gallon drums. Traffic beacons. Long lengths of containment booms. Tires — not car tires, but the kind from wheel loaders or other construction vehicles that are as tall as I am. Many of these have been half-buried by the tide, rising out of the sand like sphinx heads and temple columns in a David Roberts painting.

The western end of Pleasure Beach fronts Bridgeport Harbor, so it’s reasonable to assume this detritus originates from the barges and tankers trafficking through the area. Pleasure Beach, depending on how you look at it, is either a desert island pockmarked by the relics of civilization or a desolate landfill.

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