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Ocean Beach--San Diego, CA OB Pier

Shortboard left


Long board left


A floater that missed

Review & Photos by Bill Polick

Ocean Beach is an eclectic place squeezed between hard rock jetties of the San Diego River and affluent neighborhoods of Sunset Cliffs.  It's a collection of funky apartments and quaint bungalows overflown by roaring jets from the international airport over the hill to the east.

OB has its own mindset: 60s hippy mixed with surf culture.  You may see cars there with bumper stickers that say "US out of OB!"  It is different.  It is fun.

It is also a great place to surf.  There are several breaks along the brief beach but the best break is at the pier.  A ever-shifting sand bottom changes the break occasionally, but the pier forces swells that break left and right.  A steep beach creates backwash at high tide.

With good waves from ankle- to head-high, OB Pier breaks left or right.  When winter swells hit and the City closes the pier, stay on shore and watch out.  There's a dip in the pier and huge waves break over it, but only the foolhardy challenge the surf when it's that big.

The pier is at the foot of Newport Ave., in the heart of "downtown."  Take time to wander through the shops, toss back a brew and soak up the ambiance of Ocean Beach when you get out of the water.