Our first glimpse of the Twelve Apostles
By Judy Evans
July 2, 2018 5:54am CST
We’ve spent two days on the Great Ocean Road which winds along the coast east of Melbourne in Victoria, Australia. This area is also known as Shipwreck Coast. There is nothing between this coast and Antarctica so it experiences some incredible storms. The shoreline is constantly battered by wave and wind erosion. Probably the most well-known of the many tourist attractions along the coast is the Twelve Apostles. There are now eight of these limestone rock stacks as one collapsed in July 2005. Interestingly, until 1922 the stacks were known as the ‘sow and piglets’. Muttonbird Island was the ‘sow’ and the other stacks the ‘piglets’. For tourism purposes the name was changed to the ‘Twelve Apostles’. There has only ever been nine stacks in the group, all of which are in close proximity to each other. The apostles have been formed by erosion. The soft limestone erodes to form caves in the cliffs. These become arches which eventually collapse leaving stacks up to 50 metres high. Erosion continues to eat away at the base of the stacks at the rate of about 2cm a year. In time all the stacks will collapse into the sea but by then it’s possible new ones will have formed from the cliff-face.
16 people like this