How many of us love to take nice long relaxing walks along the beach? Listening to the sound of the waves as they crash upon the shore and breathing in the fresh ocean air. There aren’t many people who would turn that down. After reading this, however, some of you might just change your mind. The thing to remember is that sometimes while you're taking a stroll along the coastline you never know what you may find washed ashore.
Today, with the multitude of ships that carry cargo containers all across the oceans there are bound to be a few accidents.
Strong storms can toss a ship around like a rag doll and when that happens it’s not uncommon for a container or two to actually fall off of the ship. Once they hit the seafloor they usually break open and whatever is inside is free to float anywhere the current takes it, that is if it’s light enough. Add to that, all of the species of marine life that wash ashore along with some species that have yet to be discovered and you have a ton of shoreline oddities. Some of the strange things on this list that have washed up may not surprise you but some absolutely will. Whether or not you believe it, you’ll definitely be looking forward to your next adventurous walk on the beach!
20 Go Team Go!
During a storm in the Gulf of Alaska in 2012, a rogue wave hit a cargo ship and it lost several shipping containers full of product it was carrying from China. Some of the lost containers belonged to a sports product company named Team Sports America. Weeks later dozens of fly swatters donning the logos of professional and collegiate sports teams washed onto the shores of Kodiak beaches. Other things sports related, like water bottles and nerf basketballs were also found in the mix. Since these items aren’t really fragile you have to wonder if the people who found them tried to sell them for some easy cash.
19 Ducks And Turtles And Frogs - Oh My
In 1992 boxes with more than 28,000 rubber ducks and assorted bath toys fell off a ship in the eastern Pacific Ocean during a storm. More than twenty-five years later, the yellow plastic ducks, green frogs and blue turtles have made their way halfway around the world and continue to wash ashore on beaches. If there was ever an item that was made to last in the water it would be bath toys so these little guys will just keep floating until they hit land somewhere. Some of these toys have traveled over 17,000 miles and have spent time frozen in the Arctic ice pack. For six months in 2003, a $100 savings bond reward was offered by the toy company, The First Years Inc., for the return of any wayward ducks.
18 By-The-Wind-Sailors Washed Ashore
A By-the-wind-sailor is a weird looking type of jellyfish and its official name is Velella velella. They are a beautiful blue color and are normally only around seven centimeters long. They are such light creatures that the wind determines where they go most of the time and this leads to a lot of them being stranded on beaches from time to time. In 2014 thousands of these jellyfish washed up on shore in the northwest United States looking like a carpet of purple and blue deflated balloons. It happened again in 2017 and scientists are at a loss as to how to prevent it from happening again. The jelly strandings usually happen every 3-6 years.
17 Not So Crunchy Doritos
In 2006 a snack lover’s dream came true when a ship headed to Central America carrying four shipping containers of Doritos lost them to the sea in a nor’easter off the coast of Virginia. One of the containers equivalent in size to a semi-tractor-trailer washed ashore on a North Carolina beach with hundreds of cases of Doritos in it still intact. Some of the cases got wet, but most of them were still sealed and in good shape. Maybe that’s the next new flavor for the popular chip… sea salt water. It might be a good contrast to the hot ones they sell so many of!
16 These Shoes Don’t Walk On Water But They Float
A container ship headed to Hamburg was sailing out in the open waters near the Netherlands. The ship encountered some extremely rough seas due to a large storm and it lost nine of its containers over the side. The containers held toys, hamburgers and briefcases, but one of them held thousands of pairs of shoes that were supposed to be delivered to a waiting client. Since they weren’t heavy enough to sink, all of the shoes eventually washed up on shore at Terschelling Island in the Netherlands. It was reported that hundreds of people quickly raced to the beach to sift through all the shoes to find their size.
15 From Trash To Treasure
In Fort Bragg, California there is a famous beach called Glass Beach. The beach was a former city landfill dump site that was used from 1906-1967 to dispose of cans, batteries, bottles and appliances. It was common practice in those days for the trash to get pushed over the cliffs and into the ocean. Over the years Mother Nature responds by coughing up stunning pieces of colored glass onto the shore. It’s hard to believe that they were once sharp, dangerous pieces of glass but instead are a treasure trove of smooth rainbow-colored sea glass. As the waves roll onto shore it constantly dredges up pieces of glass from the seafloor and replenishes the beach with treasure.
14 Don’t Lose Your Footing!
This is just flat out creepy! Since 2007, 14 human feet have been found washed ashore on the banks of the Salish Sea in British Columbia, Canada. The mystery of the floating feet, all in shoes, continues to captivate scientists, residents and law enforcement in the area. Of the 14 feet discovered, 12 of them had on athletic sneakers and one had on a hiking boot. Investigators cataloged each foot’s shoe size and the model of the shoe in hopes that when pictures were released, family and friends might recognize the shoe and be able to help identify the person. It was determined that none of the feet discovered had shown signs of trauma. One of the first feet found was linked to a Vancouver man who suffered from depression and went missing.
13 Giant Lego Man
This is something that nightmares are made up of. The open seas around The Netherlands are a very popular sailing channel for container ships. It’s also known to have some of the most treacherous open sea weather in the world. This leads to huge waves that rock ships and they will often lose a portion of their load. This was obviously the case when this one-hundred-pound giant Lego man washed ashore in The Netherlands in 2007. This was the first official giant Lego Man sighting but there have been numerous others all over the world since then. Maybe there is a fleet of them out on the open water wreaking havoc on shipping channels? I guess it’s better than a shoe with a foot in it?
12 $48 Million Worth Of Snow On The Beach?
Imagine walking along a beach an coming upon four washed up backpacks. Now imagine your surprise when you open them up to find each of them packed to the brim with questionable substances. That is exactly what happened to a resident in Yokosuka, Japan which is 25 miles south of Tokyo. Each backpack had around 20 bricks of substance in them, and each kilo was secured in plastic wrap. 80 kilos in total were found for a value of $48 million which made it the biggest drug seizure in the history of Japan. Wow, somebody messed up big time! I wonder if any of the feet found washed ashore in Canada could belong to that person?
11 Going Bananas
When it comes to odd things washing ashore, the residents of the Netherland island of Terschelling are no strangers to it. From toys to tennis shoes, the stuff that washes ashore there is a real draw for the treasure-hunting residents. Well in 2007 adding to the strange mix of things found, thousands of bananas lined a half-mile stretch of the beach. Apparently, a storm rocked a ship and at least six containers fell off with one of them bursting wide open. Neighboring Ameland island also got bombarded with bunches of the unripe fruit as well. It was suggested by locals to send the bananas to nearby zoos.
10 The Great Lego Spill Of 1997
In 1997 there was a container ship called the Tokio Express that lost not one, but sixty-two of its containers when it was hit by a huge wave the captain described as a “once in a 100-year phenomenon”. One of the containers was filled to the brim with 4.8 million pieces of Lego. Since then the plastic debris has been found littering the shores in Ireland, Devon, and Cornwall in Southwest England. In Cornwall, dozens of volunteers scoured the beach and collected six millions pieces of the plastic Legos in a single day. Ironically, some of the Lego’s were nautically themed with shapes like flippers and octopus.
9 Eye Got My Eye On You
Nothing could end a romantic walk on the beach quicker than coming across a washed up giant eyeball. Well, that’s what was found on a Fort Lauderdale, Florida beach in 2012. Rumors began immediately that it came from a giant sea monster and some even said it wasn’t a real eyeball at all. After careful examination, however, wildlife and fish researchers concluded that the mysterious orb was indeed an eyeball and that it belonged to a swordfish. A statement was put out by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission says, "Based on straight-line cuts visible around the eye, we believe it was removed by a fisherman and discarded."
8 The Unidentifiable
There is a strange looking sea creature called the Oarfish which is rarely seen but can be found throughout the world’s oceans. They have a snake-like body and some species have been known to grow to 50 feet in length. Scientists believe that it is probably the Oarfish that sea serpent legends came from. Well in 2013 on the coast of Spain in Villaricos, an Oarfish between 12 and 15 feet long was found by swimmers. The fish was extremely decomposed, making it difficult for a positive identification but the damage it had to its body suggested that a fishing vessel had pulled it aboard.
7 Vintage Weapon
During January in 2010, tides dropped to exceptionally low levels at Dundee Beach in Australia. A ten-year-old Australian boy and his dad took advantage of the receding waters and walked far out from the shore. They could see the gun barrel sticking out of mud and quickly dug it out. After some internet research, they determined it was a vintage 16th-century Portuguese swivel gun which was used as anti-personnel weapons on ships. They also found that a similar item sold for about $12,000 (8,000 pounds) in Britain, so they wanted to try and sell it to a museum. There isn’t a historian in the world who wouldn’t want to get his hands on this.
6 Chupacabra Playing Opossum?
This was found on a beach in San Diego, California back in 2012. Nobody knew exactly what it was, but it was just plain scary looking and that is when the rumors started to swirl. It was a popular belief that it was a Chupacabra. If you’re not familiar with what that is, it’s a legendary creature that is about the size of a small bear and it has a row of spines that extend from the base of the neck down to its tail. It just took a Tetrapod Zoologist a few hours to determine in his expert opinion that the “Chupacabra” was just a plain ole opossum.
5 Bye Bye Birdie
Six thousand birds were found washed up on the shoreline in Ontario, Canada back in 2011. The cause of death was believed to be from a form botulism caused by the birds eating dead fish. It was a very disturbing sight for anyone who witnessed it. Of all of the things ever found on a beach, this was one of the most disturbing ever. The smell was so horrible that it hampered the cleanup efforts after they were found. It’s one of the saddest events in the history of Ontario and people are hoping that something like that never happens again. Nothing can prepare a person for a find like that.
4 Not The Kind Of Calamari You Want
Whenever you walk along the beach, it’s not usually surprising at all to find dead fish or some kind of marine life washed up on shore. Every once in a while you’ll even find something as big as a whale. During the winter of 2005, the California coastline was barraged by hundreds of dead giant squid. Normally the giant squid is found in very deep waters, 3,000 feet below the surface. The Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History, Stanford University, and the Dana Point Ocean Institute all studied the specimens and after dissecting them found they were filled with sand and parasites. They could not determine why the squids came ashore.
3 Got A Bone To Pick
In 2007 on the beach at Dunwich, Suffolk, a miniature wire-haired dachshund named Daisy came across the find of her lifetime. She discovered a huge fossilized wooly mammoth leg bone that weighed about 8 pounds. There really is no telling exactly where it came from but researchers say that it could actually be around two million years old. Daisy’s owner said, “Daisy looked quite pleased with herself, even though it was far too heavy for her to pick up. She loves gnawing on bones and always has the leftover lamb leg bone from our Sunday roast." That poor little pooch couldn’t have been very happy when she wasn’t allowed near it again.
2 Evel Knievel Couldn’t Have Pulled This Off
When a Tsunami hits, water travels very far inland and can reach very high levels. It does plenty of damage on its way inland, but on the way out it can cause just as much destruction. When it’s on the way out it also takes with it anything in its path and sucks it out into the deep sea. A while after the deadly Tsunami of 2011 in Japan, this Harley-Davidson motorcycle washed up onshore in Canada. When these deadly waves bring items out into the ocean, there is no telling where they will end up. Possibly on the seafloor or they may reach the shore again.
1 Ain’t It Grand?
In 2011 on a sandbar in the middle of Biscayne Bay, Florida a 600-pound baby grand piano appeared. As it turns out, 16-year-old Miami resident, Nicholas Harrington, put the burnt up piano on this sandbar in hopes of using it in a video for an art school he was trying to get into. Someone saw it and called the news and within a few short hours, it was worldwide news. If it had been left there it certainly would have washed ashore when water levels rose in an approaching hurricane. A few days later a commercial boating outfit picked it up and brought it to shore.