Dr. Beach Names America's Best Beach 2012:
Coronado Beach in San Diego, California
 

during vacation/holiday season

1

2 3 4 5
           
Beach width at low tide <10 m
narrow
10-30 m 30-60 m 60-100 m >100 m
wide
           
Beach material cobbles sand/cobbles coarse sand ----- fine sand
           
Beach condition or variation erosional ----- stable ----- depositional
           
Sand softness hard ----- ----- ----- soft
           
Water temperature cold/hot ----- ----- ----- warm
(70°-80° F)
           
Air temperature (midday) < 60° F
> 100° F
----- ----- ----- 80°-90° F
           
Number of sunny days few ----- ----- ----- many
           
Amount of rain large ----- ----- ----- little
           
Wind speeds high ----- ----- ----- low
           
Size of breaking waves high/dangerous ----- ----- ----- low/safe
           
Number of waves/width of breaker zone none 1-2 3-4 5 6+
           
Beach slope (underwater) steeply sloping bottom ----- ----- ----- gently sloping bottom
           
Longshore current strong ----- ----- ----- weak
           
Rip currents often ----- ----- ----- never
           
Color of sand gray black brown light tan white/pink
           
Tidal range large (>4 m) 3-4 m 2-3 m 1-2 m small (<1 m)
           
Beach shape straight ----- ----- ----- pocket
           
Bathing area bottom conditions rocky, cobbles, mud ----- ----- ----- fine sand
           
Turbidity turbid ----- ----- ----- clear
           
Water color gray ----- ----- ----- aquablue
           
Floating/suspended human material (sewage, scum) plentiful ----- ----- ----- none
           
Algae in water amount infested ----- ----- ----- absent
           
Red tide common ----- ----- ----- none
           
Smell (eg, seaweed, rotting fish) bad odors ----- ----- ----- fresh salty air
           
Wildlife (eg, shore birds) none ----- ----- ----- plentiful
           
Pests (biting flies, ticks, mosquitoes) common ----- ----- ----- no problem
           
Presence of sewarage/runoff outfall lines on/across the beach several ----- ----- ----- none
           
Seaweed/jellyfish on the beach many ----- ----- ----- none
           
Trash and litter (paper, plastics, nets, ropes, planks) common ----- ----- ----- rare
           
Oil and tar balls common ----- ----- ----- none
           
Glass and rubble common ----- ----- ----- rare
           
Views and vistas - Local scene obstructed ----- ----- ----- unobstructed
           

Views and vistas -

Far vista

confined

-----

-----

-----

unconfined
           
Buildings/Urbanism overdeveloped ----- ----- ----- pristine/wild
           
Access limited ----- ----- ----- good
           
Misfits (nuclear power station, offshore dumping) present ----- ----- ----- none
           
Vegetation (nearby). Trees, sand dunes none ----- ----- ----- many
           
Well-kept grounds/promenades or natural environment no ----- ----- ----- yes
           
Amenities (showers, chairs, bars, etc) none ----- ----- ----- some
           
Lifeguards none ----- ----- ----- present
           
Safety record (deaths) some ----- ----- ----- none
           
Domestic animals (eg, dogs) many ----- ----- ----- none
           
Noise (cars, nearby highways, trains) much ----- ----- ----- little
           
Noise (eg, crowds, radios) much ----- ----- ----- little
           
Presence of seawalls, riprap, concrete/rubble large amount ----- ----- ----- none
           
Intensity of beach use overcrowded ----- ----- ----- ample open space
           
Off-road vehicles common ----- ----- ----- none
           
Floatables in water (garbage, toilet paper) common ----- ----- ----- none
           
Public safety (eg, pickpockets, crime) common ----- ----- ----- rare
           
Competition for free use of beach (eg, fishermen, boaters, water-skiers) many ----- ----- ----- few
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