Gray Whale Cove State Beach - Devil's Slide

Gray Whale Cove State Beach or Devil's Slide is located in California along a stunning portion of Highway 1 that wraps around Montara Mountain between Pacifica and Half Moon Bay. The road can be treacherous, especially at night or during rains when the paved lanes are difficult to see. Closed numerous times for extended periods when cliffs become unstable and make the road unsafe, it's incredible history and ongoing efforts to either stabilize the road or build another commuter road for San Francisco Bay Area and San Mateo County traffic.

The beautiful beaches in this stretch of coast include Gray Whale Cove State Beach and Montara State Beach. Montara SB is popular for surf fishing and tidepools. The beach, which is bounded by hills to the north and south, includes Montara mountain or McNee Ranch. As the northernmost location of the Santa Cruz Mountains, Montara State Beach features the only undisturbed Coastal Mountain Habitat found along the coast in a 100-mile stretch. The beach is located in San Mateo County eight miles north of Half Moon Bay on Highway One. Two beach access points from the bluff area include one across from Second Street, immediately south of the Outrigger restaurant and the other about a half-mile north on the ocean side of Highway 1. The paths down to the beach are steep.


Gray Whale Cove State Beach is one of the few beaches in California officially recognized as a naturist or clothing optional beach. Named for its bluff-top views of the whale migrations along the coast, the beach actually sits at the base of mountains and requires descent along a steep trail.  The only available parking is located on the east side of Highway 1. For State Beach information, call 650-726-8819.


Places to stay overnight near these magnificent beach locations include Pacifica and Half Moon Bay.

Nude beaches in California for clothing optional sunbathing are extremely popular, yet extremely limited for the size of population and penchant of international vacationers who seek the relaxed California beach vacations. Nude beaches are not advertised by those who enjoy naturist activities.

parks - state beaches

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