- 28 Jan
1 Alva Beach
Alva 4807, QLD
Alva Beach is part of the Burdekin River delta. The delta extends for 60 km from the tip of Cape Bowling Green south to Beach Hill and includes a number of river entrances and long, low beaches and barrier spits, all fronted by wide and shifting sand shoals, most of which are slowly moving northward. Alva Beach is located on a spit of sand that extends 20 km northward to Cape Bowling Green. The beach lies immediately north of the shifting mouth of Plantation Creek, one of the five Burdekin River entrances, and extends for 4.5 km to where the small Alva Creek crosses the beach, beyond which is Cape Bowling Green. The beach is 15 km north-east of Ayr, and has been the site of the Ayr Surf Life Saving Club since 1926. Besides the surf lifesaving club, there are two rows of holiday houses stretching for about 500 m along the beach, which is also known as Lynchs Beach (Fig.4.38). The beach varies considerably depending on the condition of the Plantation Creek entrance. At times it is located south of Alva Beach and the beach is exposed to 0.5 to 1 m waves. These produce a 50 m wide high tide beach fronted by an irregular beach and bar, with many holes and rips. Waves tend to arrive from the south-east and run up the north-east facing beach, thereby producing a northward current. Tidal currents in Plantation Creek can also flow close to shore. Under these conditions, extreme care should be taken at all times. When the Plantation Creek mouth extends across the front of the beach, the outer spit can block off the beach, forming a quiet lagoon, with a long walk or wade out to the spit required to reach the surf. When this occurred in 1990 a causeway was constructed out to the spit, however by 1994 the spit had moved, the beach was again exposed and the causeway was gone (Figs.4.39a & b).
It is best to carefully assess the prevailing conditions at Alva Beach because of the potentially highly variable surf and swimming conditions. Check with the surf lifesavers or talk to the locals it you are at all unsure. Only swim between the flags when the patrols are operating.