Sand dune formation and movement - the Dune of Pilat

The Dune of Pilat in France is the highest sand dune in Europe. The westerly Atlantic winds have shaped Pilat, eroding sand from the seaward side and depositing it on the landward side of the dune. This action has caused the dune to slowly migrate away from the coast, engulfing the trees of an inland pine forest. Across the bay, the spit of Cap Ferret is also moving. In 1738 the spit was artificially stabilised with palisades and marram grass after it threatened to destroy nearby ports and villages.

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