How this distinctive driftwood moved from Lincoln Park to Alki

What was something of a multi-part mystery is solved today. It involves three views of the same situation – and the Seattle Parks explanation. First, we received e-mail wondering about tire tracks in the mud near Colman Pool on the Lincoln Park shore and what looked like possible “vehicle vandalism.” Then, Rob posted the photo above on the WSB Facebook page and asked, “What’s this gigantic tree trunk for? And how much did we all pay for it?” later explaining that the photo was from Alki Beach, where he saw a crew drive up in heavy equipment and drop off the tree. Last but not least, WSB Forums member Debmark posted about missing the tree at Lincoln Park and then noticing it had turned up at Alki. So what happened? Parks’ Joelle Hammerstad replies:

It was a piece of driftwood that had been at Lincoln, and when we had the high tide, it was kind of moving around and we felt it could have been unsafe for park visitors. Fortuitously, we had been looking for some natural material to do a re-landscaping project at Alki Beach and 57th Ave SW where the restrooms are. So, we included it in the project. With it being up and out of the water, the driftwood will last longer, and provides an attractive and interesting centerpiece to the project.

No added cost to the project, Parks adds. Side note: At least one other distinctive piece of driftwood did move from Lincoln Park during the December king tides; we received a Beach Drive photo from someone who found the one that had been carved by artists on the LP beach last year.

24 Replies to "How this distinctive driftwood moved from Lincoln Park to Alki"

  • westseattledood January 9, 2013 (2:18 pm)

    Saw the stump on Alki late yesterday and, lo’ and behold, WSB addresses my ponderings about where it came from today.

    Intrepid, you are! ;)

  • zephyr January 9, 2013 (2:47 pm)

    Well, I am going to miss it very much. It was a lot of fun climbing up on it and hanging out beside it while watching the ferries. I mean really how often do the tides get that bad and would folks be wading out into the surf to play with it? The park is becoming more and more “Disneyfied” each week.
    Maybe there should be warning signs up to go with all the other signage they are covering the point near the pool with. Save the seals, don’t build fires, don’t eat the shellfish, no dogs on the beach, watch the whale trail from here, etc., ad nauseam. That point used to be beautiful—a wide expansive uncluttered view out to the islands and the mountains. It actually felt a little wild out there. You could have been anywhere on the Sound “back in the day”. Now you have to look over the new benches, the excess signage, the trash cans and the new driftwood art projects they built to see the water. ~z

  • Amrakx January 9, 2013 (3:00 pm)

    Having just observed it up close, It’s quite a striking piece of driftwood that won’t go unnoticed, and nicely diminishes the impact of the unsightly restroom structure there.

  • Jim January 9, 2013 (3:08 pm)

    I like the way the Seattle Parks dept. works! We have great parks.

  • Denise January 9, 2013 (3:11 pm)

    I couldn’t agree more, zephyr. Moving that log was ridiculous. And the beach trail north of the pool, which used to be a lovely gravel path softened with ocean spray and ferns and alders has become gradually less and less wild-ish. First, many of the trees were taken out when they did the sewer work, and they widened the trail. Then last year, they started mowing down all the plants and shrubs anywhere within 6 feet of the path…even the dune grasses and other native plants. Then, they drive along past the edge of the path in their trucks, further widening it. And last week, I noticed someone had added new sand and gravel in the tire marks, even further widening it. It’s ugly.

  • zephyr January 9, 2013 (3:13 pm)

    Having just observed it up close, It’s quite a striking piece of driftwood that won’t go unnoticed, and nicely diminishes the impact of the unsightly restroom structure there.

    Comment by Amrakx
    Well, yes. And the forces of Nature brought it to Lincoln Park, not Alki! This was sited perfectly on the south side of the point. Grrrrr. ~z

  • David January 9, 2013 (3:21 pm)

    Can someone tell me where on Beach Drive the carving of the sea lion turned up? This was a big log that moved from Lincoln Park during the big storm. I would love to go see it and take my daughter with as she loves this carving. Thanks!

  • Lisa January 9, 2013 (4:17 pm)

    I’m also annoyed that the park’s department unnecessarily moved this “dangerous” log from the point at Lincoln Park. It was a great interesting piece of nature and my niece even did some climbing on it two weeks ago. I hope the visitors to Alki will enjoy it…

  • Kris January 9, 2013 (4:22 pm)

    Interesting. I was in Lincoln Park the day the Parks dept. hauled it up off the beach on to the walkway next to Colman pool. Mark(caretaker at Colman) and I stopped to talk and we both were wondering why it had been moved. It’s been on the beach in that location for quite awhile enjoyed by all and didn’t seem to pose a threat. I guess it’s time for others on Alki to enjoy its beauty.

  • wetone January 9, 2013 (4:27 pm)

    I was walking on the beach yesterday and saw that stump. Sure looks out of place where its at, got to wonder why Seattle Parks does these things ? Most people go to the beach to see the view of the water and natural settings not a stump sticking 7′ up. I guess it will match the art work they are putting up on the promenade 15’long x 9′ high. Just as they have done at Lincoln Park they are doing to Alki. Putting signage and art work on the walking paths and the promenade. I guess they have budgets they need to spend ? and create jobs for some. These areas would look much better without these types of so called improvements.

  • KatherineL January 9, 2013 (4:52 pm)

    Nice to know the why and how. Thanks for following up, WSB.

  • WSB January 9, 2013 (5:04 pm)

    David – the gentleman who e-mailed me a photo a few days after the last storm is checking to see if it’s still near his place north of Cormorant Cove. Whether it is or is not, I’m likely going to publish a mention tonight, since it’s sort of an interesting sidebar to this – TR

  • dsa January 9, 2013 (5:31 pm)

    “No added cost to the project, Parks adds. ”
    That is a misleading statement. It only means they spent money from the contingency fund set aside in the project or other another source.

    Of course it cost taxpayers money to move the stump.

  • J January 9, 2013 (5:57 pm)

    Hey! I’ve loved that stump for years–it’s a part of the identity of the beach in LP. Please may we have it back?

  • Mark Ahlness January 9, 2013 (6:29 pm)

    Speaking of things turning up elsewhere, has anybody had these show up? I took the pics at the end of Nov, 2012, Lincoln Park and they are now gone (I think):

  • AJP January 9, 2013 (7:00 pm)

    Big freaking deal, people!

  • cj January 9, 2013 (8:21 pm)

    I see all kinds of strange cutting at Lincoln Park though out the year. It really annoys me to see healthy trees cut up and those that look like they are almost dead left alone. Maybe they are just doing unnecessary stuff to rack up the bill? As years go by though the Parks looks more thinned out tree wise than it did when I first moved here 11 years ago.

  • wsartist January 10, 2013 (9:08 am)

    Lets share the love (trees) people! When you decorate your house its way better to move around what you already have, I’m glad the parks are reusing and recycling! LP has a lot of green and trees compared to Alki’s concrete scenery, and certainly can spare a log or two.

  • Denise January 10, 2013 (9:38 am)

    Let the Parks Department or the City Council know your opinions about Lincoln Park! It’s our park, after all.

  • comment January 10, 2013 (10:47 am)

    Wow… First world problems. You people care way too much about nothing.

  • BlairJ January 10, 2013 (12:43 pm)

    I thought it was against Washington State law to remove driftwood from a beach.

  • Scott Bessho January 10, 2013 (7:35 pm)

    “we received a Beach Drive photo from someone who found the one that had been carved by artists on the LP beach last year.”

    There were two carved logs. The one that was found by someone living on Beach Drive was the one that was at the far north end of LP. It has a carving of a bear with a fish in its gut. The other one, with the swirl and a salmon, drifted from just north of Coleman Pool to about the place where the other one started, near foot of the North Beach Trail.

  • David January 12, 2013 (10:41 am)

    The carving on Beach Drive is of a sea lion not a bear or seal :)

  • David January 12, 2013 (11:04 am)

    I just posted a couple of pics of the sea lion on facebook for everyone to see.

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