Castle Hill above Crane Beach derives its history from December 29, 1634, when a group of Ipswich town men voted “that the Neck of Land wheareuppon the great Hill standeth, which is known by the name of the Castle Hill, lyeinge on the other side of this River towards the Sea, shall remayne unto the common use of the Towne forever.” – Wikipedia, Castle Hill above Ipswich, Massachusetts
I missed posting here last week, but it was a busy week — two of my sons and I traveled to Boston to be with the closest of friends, ones who-are-like-family who live there now. It was a wonderful time.
We had the chance to travel to Crane Beach near Ipswich, Massachusetts for a day. There were so many other things we enjoyed during our week in Boston, including paddleboarding on the Charles River, and a U2 concert (which was out of this world), but my photographs from Crane Beach are ones I have to share.
Crane Beach, Massachusetts
We drove out on a Tuesday after July 4th weekend, a day which was forecast for rain. The weather turned out to be incredibly clear and sunny, until about the time we left in late afternoon.
I’ve spent a day on Crane Beach 15 years ago, and the experience was nice, but the beach was very crowded — probably the most crowded beach I’ve ever seen.
This time, however, Crane Beach was empty. And the skies were so blue. The sand, white. The water, warm-ish and clear.
It all was unexpected, a surprise.
My boys and I enjoyed every minute, walking the sand, enjoying the color and the beach almost entirely to ourselves. When we returned, I had to learn more about it, and about the castle high up overlooking the beach. This is what I found:
The property changed hands from Winthrops in 1637, through several families until the property was purchased by Richard Teller Crane, Jr., in 1910. The Cranes built two successive estate homes, and in 1945, the Crane family donated their beach and estate to a conservation trust, which runs the beach and wildlife preservation land to this day. In 1998, Castle Hill above Crane Beach was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1998.
The tidal pools and sand bars stretched far and wide when we arrived, but by the time we left at high tide, the beach shrank to 1/5 its original size at low tide. The tidal pools left a beautiful pattern of ripples in the sand at low tide:
The biggest surprise for me, now, a week and a half later, is looking at the images I took with my iPhone. All of the images above have been taken with my regular iPhone, and though I’ve added a watermark, I haven’t enhanced the color at all. The blues of the sky and water, the white of the sand–all are true to what we saw, but also far more vibrant than my memory recalls.
I loved Crane Beach this time …
Have you visited Crane Beach? Please share your experience with us in the comments below.
Thank you, and have a great summer-y week!