A recovery fund is under way for Seacliff State Beach, an iconic stretch in Santa Cruz County, after a series of storms devastated the area.

Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks, a nonprofit that partners with California State Parks to help maintain parks in Santa Cruz County, launched the “Seacliff State Beach Recovery Fund” to assist with long-term recovery efforts.

Known for its winding staircase and a cement ship at the end of the beach’s fishing pier, Seacliff suffered extensive damage earlier this month when enormous swells pummeled the beach during a heavy winter storm.

(Video via California State Parks of Santa Cruz/YouTube)

Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks said in a statement that “critical” infrastructure and visitor amenities suffered “immense” damage.

Half of the pier that once stretched out to the iconic cement ship has fallen into the ocean. The remainder of the pier is splintered, teetering above piles of debris that were pushed ashore by violent swells, according to the nonprofit.

In picnic areas, shade structures have collapsed, chunks of concrete eroded away and doors to some of the bathrooms have been shredded.

The popular Seacliff State Beach campground has been closed through February because of storm damage.

The nonprofit said that the seawall was destroyed and estimates that it would cost over $30 million to rebuild the pier and the seawall.

“Though it is painful to consider the devastation to this park, the experience provides an opportunity to be strategic about rebuilding and ensuring resilience in the era of climate change and its impacts on Seacliff State Beach.”

Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks

More damage could be assessed over the coming weeks and months as crews work on cleaning up and rebuilding infrastructure.

“Though it is painful to consider the devastation to this park, the experience provides an opportunity to be strategic about rebuilding and ensuring resilience in the era of climate change and its impacts on Seacliff State Beach,” Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks said in a statement.

People can make a donation and find other ways to support state parks in Santa Cruz County on the group’s website.

Biden to tour damage

President Joe Biden was expected to visit Santa Cruz and Santa Clara counties Thursday to assess damage caused by the atmospheric river storms.

The president was scheduled to meet with first responders, state and local officials, and communities impacted by the extreme weather, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said during her press briefing Wednesday.

Biden will travel with Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Deanne Criswell and assess what federal assistance might be needed to address the damage.

Biden issued a major disaster declaration Saturday that covered Santa Cruz County but has so far not extended to Santa Clara County, which issued an emergency declaration on Jan. 8 related to the storms.

Bay City News staff writer Thomas Hughes contributed to this story.