Black’s Beach can be difficult to access due to its location beneath the Torrey Pines bluffs. Landslides can occur, with tragic results. Beachgoers are warned to avoid setting up beach sites too close to the cliffs. There are four access routes to Black’s Beach.
Torrey Pines Gliderport Trail – The most popular route to Black’s Beach is via the trail from the Gliderport, located between the Torrey Pines Gliderport and the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. This steep rugged trail down the 300-foot (91 m) cliffs is usually well maintained. Visitors are advised to stay on the designated trails since many people have gotten stuck or even fallen to their deaths on the cliffs. There is free parking in the dirt lot surrounding the glider port as well as porta-potties.
Salk Canyon Road from UCSD – Students from the University of California, San Diego have access to this steep, 0.5-mile (0.80 km) long gated paved road at the southern end of Black’s Beach, which is popular with surfers. The nearby streets are primarily residential with limited public parking, most of which have 2 hr parking limits. Signs identify 2 hr parking Monday through Friday, 8am to 6 pm.
Torrey Pines State Beach – A 2-mile (3.2 km) walk south from the parking lot at the base of Torrey Pines State Reserve, along the steep cliffs, and past Flatrock will get you to Black’s Beach. Paid parking is available here. There is also free parking along Pacific Coast 101.
La Jolla Shores – If the tide is low, a 3-mile (4.8 km) walk north from La Jolla Shores beach, past Scripps Pier and the rocky tidepools of Scripps Beach will get you to Black’s Beach. The route is blocked at high tides. During low tide, it is also possible to walk from Torrey Pines State beach to Black’s Beach.