- This Week
07.16.13 - 3:13 pm | Gary Hanauer |
Despite the opening of the Tom Lantos Tunnels on March 25, 2013, nearby Gray Whale Cove, also known as Devil's Slide, continues to function — and may, state officials think, soon attract even more visitors than in previous years. The reason: crowds soon will be coming not only to the beach, but also to a mile-long stretch of the old Highway 1 that was circumvented by the tunnels and is being turned into a walking and biking trail; it's expected to open soon. To handle the larger attendance, workers will build new parking lots on either side of the highway, giving Devil's Slide a parking area on the ocean side for the first time. The current parking lot on the east side of Highway 1 is still open. "We will also be improving the stairway (leading down to the beach)," says San Mateo coast state parks sector superintendent Paul Keel. Best of all, traditional use of the beach for clothing-optional sunbathing has been continuing, with few problems. "We're not having an increase in (complaint) calls there," says Keel.
Directions: Driving from San Francisco, take Highway 1 south through Pacifica. Three miles south of the Denny's restaurant in Linda Mar, at 500 Linda Mar Blvd., Pacifica, and just past and south of the Tom Lantos Tunnels, turn left (inland or east) on an unmarked road, which takes you to the beach's parking lot on the east side of the highway and to a 146-step staircase that leads to the sand. Another lot will "eventually" be opened on the ocean side (please see above). Coming from the south on Highway 1, look for a road on the right (east), 1.2 miles north of the old Chart House restaurant in Montara. Most naturists use the north end of the beach, which is separated by rocks from the rest of the shore. Wait until low tide to make the crossing to the nude area.
SAN GREGORIO NUDE BEACH, SAN GREGORIO
Now in its 47th year of operation, America's oldest nude beach even has its own website and live webcam at www.freewebs.com/sangregoriobeach. The privately-run site is located next to San Gregorio State Beach. The beach often draws a large gay crowd, along with some nude and suited straight couples, singles, and families. On your first visit, though, you may be a little shocked by the provocative behavior that is sometimes happening in the driftwood structures on the slope leading down to the beach. Their walls aren't completely closed. Some users even want passersby to observe them having sex inside the so-called "sex condos," including Kerry, from San Francisco, who told us about her October 2012 visit with her partner, Lisa: "It was an exciting time. We've been to the beach six times. We have had men wander by and try not to stare. Other times, we have had men that more or less sneak up and peek through the wood at us while we are having sex. One time, we had three men who stood 15 feet away and watched intently as we went at it. We have not met anybody that we consider creepy. In fact, there have never been any words exchanged at all."