Best Place to Windsurf/Kitesurf - 2002
16th Street Beach
Readers' Choice: Dwight Lauderdale
Even if you can't do forward loops in 30-knot winds or catch sick air while hanging from your kitesurf sail, you can still come to 16th Street for a great time -- as long as the wind is blowing, that is. This forgiving site offers ocean conditions fit for both intermediate and advanced wind addicts. The inlet pier and the hefty reef 200 yards offshore minimize the shore break and reduce the swells, allowing even the most flat-footed sailors to venture out. And for the fear-challenged, on big days there is still some nasty whitewater for radical moves. Conditions are best when the winds are northerly and northeasterly with medium waves. But south and east winds are generally doable as well. Parking here, like most beach locations, is a pain in the neck but manageable. Beware the wicked parking-meter attendant who loves lurking around the corner and dispensing tickets. Also, watch out for boat traffic coming out of the inlet and for careless wave runner-drivers on weekends. There are plenty of grassy rigging areas and a spacious, mostly deserted area to launch one's kite. Showers and rest rooms are nearby.