Once again, nature’s amazing and surprising treasure is found hundreds of feet below the surface of the ocean. Creeping along the Monterey Bay’s bottom, sand dunes lurk there in the cold blackness, stretching up to 15 feet high and 200 feet long!
Menlo Park to Moss Landing’s marine biologists have spotted these huge underwater sand dune arrays with the help of a new generation of high-resolution sonar equipment. The amazing form of nature is in the Monterey Canyon, which lies just off the central coast.
Being underwater the researchers named the dunes ‘sand waves’, which occur in patterns in about 90 feet of water starting near the head off Moss Landing Harbor canyon. Along the canyon floor and at least 1,000 feet deep down to waters, the sand waves extend westward. It probably must be extending much deeper into the waters.
Jingping Xu, an oceanographer with the U.S. Geological Survey in Menlo Park said,
If you swim in the ocean and see sand ripples, these are like that. They are just a different size. They zigzag along the bottom.