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Natural Bridges
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'NB's or Natural Bridges is at the far west end of West Cliff Drive in Santa Cruz. The south end of the beach has spectacular sea stacks and sea arches. There is a fee to use this State Park. Locals usually buy an annual pass. It has great parking and a grass rigging area. There is a picnic area, lawns and restrooms. Nearby are all the attractions of Santa Cruz. Surfing nearby in town.

There is a wide sandy beach with shore break and surf. Its a very long walk to the water across soft sand. Because of the bluffs upwind there can be a wind shadow in the shorebreak area and sometimes you may have to swim to the wind line. No problem when the surf is small. But if you time it wrong its like the rinse cycle in your Maytag when the surf is up. Drifting kelp can snag the fin of the unwary.

Once you hit the windline, solid wind prevails with windy spring days usually letting you rig between 4.0 and 5.0 with lots of BIG ocean swells further out. The kelp beds are a great source of amusement to locals, and a major source of frustration to visitors. There is great speed sailing in the lee of the kelp...if you don't hit any. Once outside there is superb big ocean swell sailing.

When winds are from N to E to SSW, the sensor is quite accurate, but you can't sail at Natural Bridges in those wind directions.
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Shops, Schools, Clubs, Events, Food, Lodging, More,
 Season: April-August 
 Water: Cold and clear 
 Ability Level: Inter. To adv. 
 Familiness: Beach, watch, town 
 Parking: No problem, 
 Launch: Sandy w/shorebreak 

From the Peninsula: Go south on hwy 101 or 280 to San Jose. Merge with Hwy 17 going to Santa Cruz. Go towards the waterfront and go north on West Cliff Drive to the State Park. From East Bay: Take Hwy. 880 to San Jose. Merge with Hwy. 17 and follow the instructions above From San Francisco and North Bay: Cross Golden Gate Bridge Take turnoff to 19th Avenue/Park Presidio Merge with Hwy 280 Go west on Hwy. 92 to Half Moon Bay Go south on Hwy. 1 to Santa Cruz. Head to the waterfront and go north on West Cliff Drive to the State Park.

Located on the second house from the entrance to the park and some 100 feet from the cliff to the ocean. Estimated to be about 150 feet above the ocean. One report says "When it is at 10mph especially from the North West its about twice that 100 yards offshore. The correction factors as of July 26, 1999: SSW & SW 10%, WSW, W, WNW & NW 20% and NNW 10%. Because of the point upwind, this sensor can be in huge wind shadow from the West to North directions. The best location for this sensor would be at the point upwind but permission was not granted. Accuracy ranges from fair to poor to right on from the South winds. In most cases slogging to the wind line is the norm.


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