History of Stone Steps

History of Stone Steps

Stone Steps Beach, nestled in the coastal town of Leucadia, California, holds a storied history that spans decades, portraying a raw and unfiltered narrative of its evolution. This picturesque shoreline, renowned for its rugged rock formations and a distinct set of stone steps leading down to the sandy expanse, has become a magnet for wanderers seeking an authentic coastal experience.

In its early years, Stone Steps Beach existed as a well-kept secret among the tight-knit community of Leucadia but soon became a staple in Leucadia culture. In the vibrant 1960s and 70s, Stone Steps Beach emerged as a haven for the Southern California surf subculture. Its range of different waves, attracted skilled surfers in search of a challenge. A community was formed around Stone Steps and brought people of all types of different backgrounds and skill sets to come together.

In the 1960s, Stone Steps hosted one of the most iconic surf contests in all of California: the Stone Steps Invitational. This annual event continued for about 40 years, with the goal of having fun and not worrying about who wins and loses. There were minimal written records of the winners and losers. Each contest featured several groups competing at different times throughout the day, all starting with the same routine. Contestants would place their boards on the beach facing the water, sit on them, and drink a bucket of beer in an effort to "level the playing field" before running into the water to begin surfing.

The event gained significant traction within the community, leading local surf shops to sponsor the tournament and create trophies for just about every achievement imaginable. These achievements ranged from the wave of the day, wipeout of the day, and even the cutest dog on the beach. The Stone Steps Invitational holds a special place in Leucadian history, serving as a cornerstone of surf culture and epitomizing the essence of fun-filled competitions.

As Leucadia experienced a surge in growth during the mid-20th century, Stone Steps Beach managed to resist the encroaching tide of development, preserving its untamed allure. Word of its unspoiled beauty spread like wildfire among beach enthusiasts and seasoned surfers who sought respite from overcrowded spots. Here, the waves crashed against the rocky shoreline with an intensity matched only by the passion of those who dared to conquer them.

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