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A look at downtown Myrtle Beach as Michael approaches

Sea foam washes ashore near Springmaid Pier.
Sea foam washes ashore near Springmaid Pier. mtomasic@thesunnews.com

Laura Matisak walked down the beach near Springmaid Pier holding a plastic bag with two shells.

Sea foam blew around her as waves came crashing to the shore.

“The ocean’s angry today,” Matisak said. “I’ve never seen the waves this high since I lived here.”

Hurricane Michael made landfall in the Florida Panhandle as a powerful Category 4 storm with sustained winds around 155 mph. Tropical storm force winds are likely in Alabama, Georgia, the Carolinas and Virginia.

The Grand Strand is seeing some of the first effects from Hurricane Michael, which made landfall in Florida as a Category 4 storm Wednesday morning. The storm is set to move through Georgia and into South Carolina as a tropical storm.

But some parts of Horry County are still reeling from Hurricane Florence, which made landfall in North Carolina as a Category 1 storm in September.

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Now, the Grand Strand will feel tropical storm force winds starting early Thursday morning. According to the National Weather Service in Wilmington, North Carolina, peak winds could reach between 35 and 60 mph.

But the threat of imminent weather isn’t stopping Carl Evans from enjoying his trip to Myrtle Beach. The Warrenton, Virginia native is staying at the Crown Reef through the week.

“I got a raincoat,” Evans said, looking at dark clouds as they loomed over the ocean. “It’s always better when it’s nice, but you make due.”

Down Ocean Boulevard it’s business as usual. Morning runners move down the sidewalk, as businesses selling t-shirts and other novelties begin to open their doors.

The SkyWheel spins, an uncommon sight after the gondolas were taken down for Hurricane Florence.

Dredges sit in the ocean, signs of beach renourishment that is scheduled to be complete in the area later this year.

According to Matisak, who was searching for shells and sharks teeth, the waves were coming in fast, the tide rushing close the entrance of the beach.

“I had to come down just to see it snow,” Evans said. “All this foam, it’s crazy.”

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