Let it be

By Ray Jarvis

Throughout the world, in every culture, humans mold and shape the land as needed. Whether it is to produce food, enable transportation or create shelter, the Earth’s resourses provide us with all the necessary ingredients. One of the world’s most renowned surf spots and one of Southern California’s most unique areas, is now in danger for this exact reason. The Transportation Corridor Agency (TCA) has proposed a toll road project that could directly and negatively affect the San Onefre State Beach as well as the world class surf break known as Trestles.

The TCA has pushed to move forward with the project. However, efforts and scheduled voting on the topic have been delayed as protestors have made a stand. The Surfrider Foundation, environmentalists, and outraged surfers all expressed concern with the road’s affect on the San Onefre State Beach, the world class waves, as well as the threatened and endangered species that exist in and around the State Beach.

Matt McClain, spokesperson for the Surfrider Foundation, said in an interview with Surfer Magazine, “The project will profoundly compromise one of Southern California’s last remaining, unimpeded watersheds.”

Just recently, the slow demise of “Mundaka,” one of Spain’s world class surf breaks, has been witnessed by scientists, surfers, business owners and conservationists alike. Much to the surprise of locals and eager travelers, the wave that once tore along the river mouth at Mundaka had all but vanished by early January. It has been suggested by many that the demise of the sandbar may be due in part to the Dredging of a shipping port four KM up the river. While this is a possibility, others believe the sand bar may be in a docile state due to an unusual lack of winter swell. Either way there is cause for concern. Mundaka not only provides a world class venue for surfing, but supports a local community that is dependent on the thousands of tourists drawn to the region each year.

Unfortunately, the problem in France has already taken effect, whereas Trestles can still be saved. It is important to recognize what Trestles and the San Mateo Campground bring to the area. Besides the national attention that Trestles commands from the surfing world, the San Onefre State Beach remains one of the last such places of its kind in Southern California. Mundaka has provided an example of what can happen if humans interfere with the land. The public outcry against the toll road proposal should be proof enough that the San Onefre State Beach provides something special to the public and the world.

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