Hidden gems along the shore


I never thought during my preparation for the “Top Ten things to do in the Fall in Clear Lake” blog that it would lead so many people to the discovery Clear Lake has these hidden gems along the shore.

According to Wikipedia, sea glass is “physically and chemically weathered glass found on beaches along bodies of salt water. These weathering processes produce natural frosted glass.”

After more extensive research, I found that because Clear Lake is a freshwater body of water, we technically have beach glass.  “Beach glass” comes from non-saline bodies of water (fresh) and is often less frosted in appearance than sea glass.  While much like sea glass, it doesn’t have rigorous waves or saline from the ocean to weather the material, causing it to appear a bit different.  You may even find a piece that appears dull on one side and shiny on the other.  This is because of the way it was likely embedded in the mud and silt and how the water washed over it throughout the years.

Regardless of the technical terminology, these beautiful nuggets created by the water and sand are one-of-a-kind treasures.

My daughter has been hunting for beach glass along the shores of Clear Lake for years.  When the docks begin to come out for the season, it’s the perfect time to wade in the shallows, looking for these treasures.

Here is her haul from this year.

Cool, right?

And here you all thought these beauties could only be found on beaches near the ocean!

So, where does this beautiful glass come from?

Well, naturally produced sea or beach glass comes from broken bottles, broken tableware, or even from shipwrecks.  While we don’t have any sunken pirate ships that I know of here in Clear Lake, it seems ours is originated mostly from random glass broken in or near the lake.

And it doesn’t turn into these frosted gems overnight, either.  Not even close!  It’s estimated to take 20-40 years to formulate into these beauties.  Some have even been thought to take upwards of 100 years given their texture and shaping.

Sea and beach glass gets its color from the original piece of glass.  Most of what you’ll find in Clear Lake is white or brownish from beer, soda and juice bottles. Every now and then, however, you might come across a piece of blue or green.  Those are rare.

Remember way back in the day when 7-Up was sold in a green, glass bottle?  The green beach glass found now is likely from them!

And if my memory serves me correctly… it wasn’t long ago when someone found a submerged vehicle in the lake, right?  Clear beach glass is likely from a wind shield or window.  Something you just might find regularly from the random cars and trucks falling through the ice over the years.

So, the next time you’re strolling along the shoreline of our beautiful lake, keep your eyes peeled for beach glass.