Outer Barrier, series of sandy barrier islands or offshore bars, extending c.75 mi (120 km) along the south shore of Long Island, SE N.Y., from Rockaway Beach at the west to the east end of Shinnecock Bay and separating a series of lagoons (Great South Bay, Moriches Bay, and Shinnecock Bay) from the Atlantic Ocean. East Rockaway, Jones, Fire Island, Moriches, and Shinnecock inlets pierce the barrier, forming the narrow, sandy islands. The resort communities of Atlantic Beach, Long Beach, and Westhampton Beach; and Fire Island National Seashore, Jones Beach State Park, and other recreational areas are found there. The low-lying islands are subject to wave erosion, and during storms they are sometimes inundated and cut.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.