DR BEACH’S 50 CRITERIA

Dune grass at the beach on a summer day.

 

PHYSICAL FACTORS

 

CATEGORIES

during vacation/holiday season

1

2 3 4 5
 
Beach width at low tide <10 m
narrow
10-30 m 30-60 m 60-100 m >100 m
wide
Beach material cobbles sand/cobbles coarse sand —– fine sand
Beach condition or variation erosional —– stable —– depositional
Sand softness hard —– —– —– soft
Water temperature cold/hot —– —– —– warm
(70°-80° F)
Air temperature (midday) < 60° F
> 100° F
—– —– —– 80°-90° F
Number of sunny days few —– —– —– many
Amount of rain large —– —– —– little
Wind speeds high —– —– —– low
Size of breaking waves high/dangerous —– —– —– low/safe
Number of waves/width of breaker zone none 1-2 3-4 5 6+
Beach slope (underwater) steeply sloping bottom —– —– —– gently sloping bottom
Longshore current strong —– —– —– weak
Rip currents often —– —– —– never
Color of sand gray black brown light tan white/pink
Tidal range large (>4 m) 3-4 m 2-3 m 1-2 m small (<1 m)
Beach shape straight —– —– —– pocket
Bathing area bottom conditions rocky, cobbles, mud —– —– —– fine sand
Turbidity turbid —– —– —– clear
Water color gray —– —– —– aquablue
Floating/suspended human material (sewage, scum) plentiful —– —– —– none
Algae in water amount infested —– —– —– absent
Red tide common —– —– —– none
         
Smell (eg, seaweed, rotting fish) bad odors —– —– —– fresh salty air
Wildlife (eg, shore birds) none —– —– —– plentiful
Pests (biting flies, ticks, mosquitoes) common —– —– —– no problem
Presence of sewage/runoff outfall lines on/across the beach several —– —– —– none
Seaweed/jellyfish on the beach many —– —– —– none
Trash and litter (paper, plastics, nets, ropes, planks) common —– —– —– rare
Oil and tar balls common —– —– —– none
Glass and rubble common —– —– —– rare
Views and vistas – Local scene obstructed —– —– —– unobstructed
Views and vistas –

Far vista

confined —– —– —– unconfined
Buildings/Urbanism overdeveloped —– —– —– pristine/wild
         
Access limited —– —– —– good
Misfits (nuclear power station, offshore dumping) present —– —– —– none
Vegetation (nearby). Trees, sand dunes none —– —– —– many
Well-kept grounds/promenades or natural environment no —– —– —– yes
Amenities (showers, chairs, bars, etc) none —– —– —– some
         
Lifeguards none —– —– —– present
Safety record (deaths) some —– —– —– none
Domestic animals (eg, dogs) many —– —– —– none
Noise (cars, nearby highways, trains) much —– —– —– little
Noise (eg, crowds, radios) much —– —– —– little
Presence of seawalls, riprap, concrete/rubble large amount —– —– —– none
Intensity of beach use overcrowded —– —– —– ample open space
Off-road vehicles common —– —– —– none
Floatables in water (garbage, toilet paper) common —– —– —– none
Public safety (eg, pickpockets, crime) common —– —– —– rare
Competition for free use of beach (eg, fishermen, boaters, water-skiers) many —– —– —– few