San Elijo State Beach – Taking it Easy

We are told this is uncharacteristic weather for San Diego.
We are told this is uncharacteristic weather for San Diego, but it was still great weather for camping and reading on the beach.

Adam and I are currently hanging out in San Diego, and spending the majority of our time with our amazing friends Pete and Alissa, who have a beautiful house that includes an extra bedroom and bathroom. (And a shower with hot water! And a fridge with cold beer in it! And a soccer team we can sub for! Amazing?)

However, we didn’t want to spend too many nights getting soft, so we headed up to San Elijo State Beach for a night. The site is only half hour north of San Diego and apparently has a great break for surfing or paddle surfing. There is even a surf school right in the park.

We saw tons of surfers of all ages, and every one of them was wet-suited up to face the water temperatures of about 60 degrees. We did not take the plunge this time. It remains to be seen if we’ll tackle this particular sport on this part of the trip.

You can see the campgrounds just south of the camp store. If you look closely to the right, you see the highway and then the train tracks.
You can see the campgrounds just south of the camp store. If you look closely to the right, you see the highway and then the train tracks.

The campsite is between the ocean and the road. It was our first night camping near the beach, which was fantastic, but it was our most expensive night of camping so far with a $35 campsite fee plus a $8 reservation fee from Reserve America. Unlike many other places we’ve visited, check in isn’t until 2pm, and you have to pay extra to park in the state park while you wait, so you get a really late start to setting up camp. It’s also reservation only, and we were only able to get one Thursday night reserved at this late stage in the game. This would be a really fun place to hang out if you wanted to spend a few days learning or surfing with some friends, especially if you could make your reservations exactly 6 months in advance when they open up. The park had showers for a few dollars, tacos and beers right at the camp store, and a ton of food and beverage options just across the highway.

The one potentially serious drawback about tent camping in this park is that Amtrak trains run all day and all night. The trains roll through town, blasting their horns. When this wakes you up in the middle of the night you may also think you’ve mistakenly pitched your tent on the tracks.

As sad as it will be, we’ll probably head north to Joshua Tree National Park by early next week, though not until we finish a few more brewery visits and other fun sports like disc golf, but real camping will be back on the forefront before too long!

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