Rincon (Spanish, "angle" or "corner") is a surf spot located at the Ventura and Santa Barbara County line in Southern California, USA. Also known as the "Queen of the Coast", Rincon is one of the most famous surf spots in California, known around the world for its well-formed waves and long rides. The book 100 Best Surf Spots in the World rates Rincon at 24. It is best at low tide during the winter months when swells are coming mostly from the west and northwest. There is a gated residential community that occupies most of the Rincon beachfront. However, public access is provided at parking lots on both sides of the gated community, with restrooms and a picnic area in the upper parking lot, Rincon Beach Park.
Rincon is divided into three parts: the Cove, Rivermouth, and Indicator. The cove is the best part of the point and is the closest to the freeway. Rivermouth is the fastest section of the wave reaching from the mouth of Rincon Creek to the large white/stone house. Tube rides occur mainly at Rivermouth at low tide. Indicator at the top of the point, visually obstructed from the freeway. While Rincon is most famous for its long right-breaking waves, Indicator also produces some extremely fast left-breaking waves during the summer, when southerly swells are most prevailant. During a larger westerly swells all three sections often connect into one contiguous ridable wave.
Because of the quality of the wave, people travel from all over the world to surf there, often resulting in extremely crowded conditions, aggressive behavior, physical altercations and injuries.
There have been occasional deaths at Rincon, mostly resulting from surfers getting caught at the bottom of the cove at higher tides during larger swells, and getting smashed into the granite boulders which support the nearby freeway.
Environmentally, Rincon Creek has a tendency to flow higher levels of bacteria into the surf zone during heavy rains, resulting in occasional beach closures.
- Meyers, Jeff (March 8, 1992). "Pell-Mell IN THE Swell Surfing Traffic at World-Renowned Rincon Has Increased at a Rate That Alarms Locals and Threatens to Desecrate Site's Mystique". Los Angeles Times.
- Sumpter, Ron (2004). 100 Best Surf Spots in the World. Globe Pequot. pp. 50–51. ISBN 0-7627-2598-2.
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