About Topanga State Beach

A visible long right point at the base of Topanga Canyon. Topanga can be a real workable wave with plenty of challenging sections, but it never matches the shape of its cousin, Malibu. Topanga will take any swell, but it's best on a big west. During the huge El Nino winter of 1982-'83, local Donnie Wilson picked off a ride from Topanga that connected all the way past Chart House -- a distance of more than 300 yards. Always crowded and on shore there's this mangy, hippie, drifter atmosphere. Don't accept any free brownies.

Source: Topanga State Beach Surf Guide

Ability Level

Intermediate - advanced

Beg Int Adv

Intermediate to advanced

Local Vibe


Welcoming Intimidating

Rather surly.

Crowd Factor


Mellow Heavy

Since it's one of the closest pointbreaks to downtown L.A., it's rarely empty.

Spot Rating


Poor Perfect

Gets good on a solid W swell.

Shoulder Burn


Light Exhausting

It takes a lot of swell to make Topanga a lot of work, so the shoulder burn is typically low. Unless you factor in navigating the crowd.

Water Quality


Clean Dirty

Close to LA, but worst after a rain.

Additional Information


Locals, car rip-offs.


There's a big parking lot that overlooks the break.

Bring Your

Shortboard, fish, funboard, longboard, bodyboard



Best Season


Swell Consistency and Wind Overview

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