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Read the previous post about the proposed Beacon's trail here: Leucadia!: Beacon's Beach Trail Access
Here is cliff erosion meeting the beach sand. The experts will tell you that the majority of our beach sand comes from the cliffs and that is why we cannot build sea walls of any kind. As a 36 year old surfer who grew up in Leucadia I can firmly tell you that there is a clear difference between dirt and sand. Classic Leucadia beach sand is mostly black and is sticky. It comes from huge sand basins offshore that spring and summer south swells push onto the beach. During the winter when we have big north swells and storms we lose a lot of sand. It's the ebb and flow of the beach. I believe the Surfrider Foundation has a political agenda against beach property owners so they overhype the amount of "sand" we get from the cliffs.
The natural beauty of the bluff and vegetation meeting the beach is superior to any kind of wall. But what about safe public beach access? Is there a happy medium?
The trail and it's switchbacks are pretty cool. When I was a kid the switchbacks were concrete ramps that were slippery with sand and impossible to walk up in flip-flops. The current trail has some dicey sections that are sure to fall during the next good rain storm.
When Leucadia Blvd was extended to El Camino Real the city was thinking about the Ecke's new golf course and shopping center. Did they realize they were also linking the new shiny mega-sprawl known as San Elijo Hills to Beacon's (and the dysfunctional Leucadia/Vulcan/Hwy101 intersection). The Union Tribune reported that 170,000 people visited Beacon's last year. While I don't trust those beach people-counters that much (your surfboard appears to be getting counted as you walk by) it's obvious that since San Elijo Hills was built, Beacon's beach and it's soft breaking beginner friendly waves are more crowded than ever.
The new plan must address drainage.
The parking lot is always busy. It's a great place to pull up in the evening and watch the sunset. Unfortunately there is only one decent bench on the north end of the lot. I failed to take a photo of the north end but there is a lot of un-used space. There is a pay phone used by illegal aliens and drug dealers, a bike rack, one of those nice tiled art trash cans, a planter and not much else. This would be a good area for porti-potties.
Bonus photo, a Ron Stoner shot of Billy Hamilton surfing Beacon's in the mid 60's summertime.
Several items which I think are noteworthy; the bluffs are effected by the wind. When Beacon's had thick healthy kelp beds not only did the surf stay glassy and good all day but the cliffs were not taking a constant beating from the wind. Our kelp beds are still trying to recover from the horrid chopping they took from the last and possibly illegal midnight run by the Kelpco and their kelp cutter ship.
Also, when I was a kid many areas of the bluffs were always damp, wet and drippy. Wild tomatoes grew all over the cliffs. Now the bluffs are bone dry and therefore brittle. You know when you build a sandcastle how the sand needs to be damp so it will stay up? The bluffs are the same way. Now that Encinitas has turned into suburbia, rain water no longer soaks into the ground and slowly seeps it's way towards the ocean. Now it just quickly runs off down the streets, into the gutters and goes gushing out into the ocean. I don't think this is reversable.
The majority of our sand migration down the coast is blocked by the Oceanside jetties. I don't see how our local cliff erosion is supposed to make up this massive quanities of sand that no longer reaches us.