|Find the best surf spots||
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Datum: WGS84 [ Help ]
Latitude: 33° 1.548' N
User rating (18)
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From 5 Fwy, exit Encinitas Blvd. Turn left (south) on Pacific Coast Highway. Park in the San Elijo State Beach parking lot (fee), or on the side of PCH (watch for cross traffic). Head down the stairs to the beach. Just south of the lifeguard tower.
DistanceIn the city
Easy to find?Easy to find
Public access?Public access
Special accessDon't know
Alternative name pipes, campgrounds, traps
FrequencyVery consistent (150 day/year)
DirectionRight and left
BottomSandy with rock
Normal lengthNormal (50 to 150m)
Good day lengthLong (150 to 300 m)
Good swell directionNorthWest, West, SouthWest, South, SouthEast
Good wind direction
Swell sizeStarts working at Less than 1m / 3ft and holds up to 4m+ / 12ft
Best tide positionLow and mid tide
Best tide movementRising and falling tides
Week crowdFew surfers
You are going to find a lot of longboarders here. Super friendly crowd. HOWEVER, this is a shortboard/longboard wave. On a shortboard, its a fun hotdogger wave, however, on the right swell will become hollow. Can get powerful when it is 6ft+. Mellow vibe and fun wave.
This spot will stay good a lot longer than the surrounding beaches. Kelp beds offshore groom the waves and high cliffs keep it wind protected. Multiple personality wave - can be mushy and soft, but transforms into a very rippable wave. Little hard for shortboarders to get waves as it is not that steep.
Fun Wave, Lots of waves by it so if you dont like it you have about 4 differnt breaks in 5-10 minuet walking range. Such as Pink House + Lifeguards (better shortboarders wave), South Pipes, San Elijo (better longboarders wave) HAVE FUN!
By Anonymous , 19-09-2016
no parking - so damn hard to even find a parking spot. and every car is full of surferbros, so every spot in the whole damn campground is beyond comfortable surfing capacity even on weekdays. seems to be the spot favored by people who moved here from out of state and picked up longboarding in their 30s.
By Anonymous , 30-11-2009
Bad energy at Pipes - Have to agree with the majority of posters stating that Pipes does not have a friendly vibe. Same group of longboarders paddle for every single wave, well, not paddle since their boards should be considered small water crafts. Absolutely no respect for the sport of surfing or the fact that many people wait patiently, only to get snaked by the same group of a**hole longboarders. Bad reflection on the supposed aloha of surfing. These clowns would be lost without their gigantic boards and bad attitudes. If I see the same people hog all the waves, non stop, I drop in on them. Sorry, but after waiting for an eternity, I'm going, like it or not. The pipes locals have no respect for surfing and absolutley no integrity.
By SurfForFreedom , 26-04-2009
Longboarders Need to Wait in Line - Long boarding doesn't mean you can try and snake every wave. Give the lineup the respect it needs and don't try and be a total ass and think all waves are yours. I ride a short board and to me getting dropped in on by long boarders is bull. Everyone can get waves and if you are a die hard long boarder then go to tourmeline with the rest of them.
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