by Mike Bennett Photos by Heather Roe
Corona Del Mar State Beach
Corona Del Mar, California
This Memorial Day I was one of the 35 million people that AAA said would take a road trip. Funny, I don’t remember them ever asking me. I guess they are psychic.
My mother was a member of the Neptune Society so it was really nice to visit the Pacific Ocean and one of the most unique beaches in California, Pirates cove in Corona Del Mar. It’s a nice long ride on our best freeways so make sure you have good music, beef jerky and maybe a rock star.
The traffic gods were smiling on me this trip. I-10 west to 60 west to 91 west, even the 55 had no slowing at all. It’s tricky to find this beautiful neighborhood beach and you won’t find this easy on GPS. At the end of the 55 fwy, keep going and take the COAST HWY exit and turn left. Take it to Bayside Drive and go right. Check out those million dollar yachts. When you see Fernleaf Drive, go right up that hill. I promise you will say Oooh! at the top. Follow it around to the left and watch for the parking area. You will have to follow little dirt trails down to the stairway that leads to Pirates Cove.
This little beach is at the exit of the Balboa peninsula exactly across from the world famous “Newport Strand”. There are caves, tide pools full of sea life and you can watch the boats come in and out. Sunsets here are a major attraction. With the full Moon this Memorial Day weekend the tides were incredibly high. Higher than I have ever seen them, and I have been going there for 25 years. The whole cove was almost full. There is a larger beach with larger waves and larger tide pools that is dog friendly during certain hours.
There are so many great things to do after sunset. Do you remember seeing the Balboa ferry signs on Bayside drive? It takes you to the Fun Zone.
For more information, search Corona Del Mar state beach.