stretch of sand extending into the ocean with green shrubs visible in the foreground
San Nicolas Island Sandspit. ©Steve Schwartz.
A spit is a stretch of sand that is connected to the mainland and extends out into the ocean. It forms as wind and waves, traveling at an angle to the shore, move sediment (sand, dirt) down the coast. When the shoreline curves, the sediment continues to be pushed and is deposited in the same direction as before, forming a bank of sand that extends outward.

Last updated: November 9, 2018