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When in Encinitas, California, ask for directions to Moonlight Beach (everyone knows where it is). When you get to Moonlight, drive one mile north on Neptune Avenue until you get to South El Portal. Take a left, and you are at Stone Steps, a hidden gem in North San Diego County.
WalkInstant access (< 5min)
Easy to find?OK
Public access?Public access
Special accessDon't know
Alternative name Steps
DirectionRight and left
BottomFlat rocks with sand
PowerHollow, Fast, Powerful, Ordinary, Fun, Powerless, Ledgey
Normal lengthShort (< 50m)
Good day lengthNormal (50 to 150m)
Good swell directionNorthWest, West, SouthWest, South
Good wind directionEast
Swell sizeStarts working at Less than 1m / 3ft and holds up to 5m / 16 ft and over
Best tide positionAll tides
Best tide movementRising tide
Stone Steps is the ultimate female surfspot in that it is very, very fickle. It breaks everyday, is NEVER crowded, but is never, ever predictable. Locals love the spot, but are always willing to share since only two or three locals are ever out at one time.
Most of the time (80%) the waves are closed out, mushy, choppy, or all of the above, but when it gets good it is a shredable and hollow left, along with a peeling right. The left is just slightly south of the stairs, and the right is about fifty yards north of the stairs. Farther south is Roseta Street, which gets pretty good too. About three hundred yards north is Secrets which can get really good. It can get extrememly hollow. The best waves are in the summer, because there is more sand to shape the wave, but it always seems to be blown out in the winter. If you make it a poing to surf it everyday for a month, you will get some of the best surf you ever had, but you have to stay on it. It is very safe. The only hazard is the fact that if you start to drown, no one will be there to save you, so bring a friend. Big winter storms can sometimes hold their shape up to fifteen foot faces, but there is not channel in the winter and the paddle is brutal. If you live there, you will love it. Everyone else hates it.
I grew up here and love the spot. I have been tubed, gone vertical, caught air, and had a wonderful time surfing there. It isn't as good as it was in the seventies (when there was a ton of sand on the beach) for now it is a cobblestone beach in the winter, and a small sand beach in the summer. There used to be a large local force there, but now it is a forgotton gem in North San Diego County. This entire stretch of beach should always be checked, because it is NEVER crowded, even on the best days. It is also very safe, except for the isolation factor. If you get hurt, it's a long way to get help unless someone on the cliff sees you and calls 911. Love the place like I do and you will be rewarded. Most North San Diego County locals do not know this spot, and the ones who do will curse it as the fickle lady she is. But even a fickle woman has a few good days, right?
It is my home, I am a life-long local, and I love it. Locals here welcome anyone, especially on the good days. I like the rights, but the lefts are more popular.
By NEPTUNE NATIVE , 21-03-2008
TO: I aint Rod Sorenson, Ed Katz or Blake - You must be the jerk who used to get it doggy style by Ed's cocker spaniel SAMMY! You have to be related to George the homo!! Go home geek. Stone steps is way to cool for assholes like you!!
By Anonymous , 08-06-2007
stone steps biker gang - ATTENTION SURFERS i have urgent news to tell you. Stone Steps now has a biker gang so watch out. they ride little mini bikes down neptune and screem war chants while swinging around chains and clubs. Stone Steps is no longer safe do not surf it.espesailly if its good. or stone steps biker gang A.K.A.(SSBG)will kut u up. remember, you mess with the bull you get SSBD.
By ? , 01-11-2005
shollow crowds - closeout crapola and over 20 poeple out surfing this little 2ft peak!...............why would anyone want to surf a over crowded spot that's not even good!
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