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Beach Berm Play for California Winters

Beach Berm Play for California Winters

Beach berm play is a joy of the winter beach. Berms can be man-made, but in California they occur naturally during the winter months. We made repeat visits to a small 2-3 foot berm at Oxnard Beach Park over the holidays (above and below).

Last year, we played on the berm at Aliso Beach Park where it towered over our heads in the 6-7 foot height range.

Somehow, adding just a little hill to the beach inspires some very creative play:

  • My 8 year old son dug holes/caves in the side and then reached up to put pressure on the ledge for his “Avalanche” game.
  • My husband launched the kids up to the ledge after they slide or jumped down.
  • Even adults can surf the ledge by standing sideways and sliding down while remaining upright.
  • The kids constructed an official slide and scooted all the way to the shorebreak in a little train with their cousins.

And, of course, beach sand is one of the best mediums for notes to pals. My friend, Marghanita, wrote my name in the snow recently (see her awesome blog post). So I wanted to send a little bit of our sunny So-Cal beach fun northward. Happy beach play — and make sure you come back and comment on where you find the best berms.

Note of caution: Obviously, make sure your kids don’t go sticking their heads in the holes they dig. The berm is very unstable and can collapse at any time. Also, keep your eyes on the waves. Winter waves can sneak up on you and wash all the way into the berm.


Wednesday 30th of December 2009

I had no idea the hills on the beach had a special name! :) During our stay on the beach in Oxnard, the kids have been having a ball playing all sorts of games -- from chasing the tide to building faery houses & throwing sand balls.


Tuesday 29th of December 2009

love the pictures....the beach in the winter is wonderful. Thank you for sharing such lovely ideas...and places. :0)

Marghanita Hughes

Tuesday 29th of December 2009

Hey Michele, You just made my day! We wish we could come and play on your beach berms-what brilliant fun! We'll need to make a play date for summer 2010. Thanks again for the beach love! Marghanita x

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