Hundreds of people turned out over the weekend to say farewell to an iconic wood pier near Aptos that was so heavily damaged by rough weather that California State Parks officials deemed it too unsafe to repair.

Heavy equipment is scheduled to begin arriving at Seacliff State Beach this week as crews prepare to demolish the popular pier on the Santa Cruz County coast.

January’s atmospheric river rainstorms and ocean swells were more than the longtime landmark could withstand, parks officials said.

YouTube video
Damage to Seacliff State Beach and its pier is documented in this video. (California State Parks/YouTube)

“The damage to the public-serving infrastructure is extensive and has impacted the ability for State Parks to provide the standard recreational opportunities visitors have experienced in the past,” California State Parks said in a statement.

The most extensive damage is at the pier, campground, and seawall. Crews were expected to begin positioning equipment this week with work expected to commence next week, the state park agency said.

Saturday featured a planned cleanup of the area by public agencies and supporters of the beach, which is known for its fishing pier and concrete ship, the SS Palo Alto.

“Seacliff State Beach has been beloved for generations,” California State Parks District Superintendent Chris Spohrer said in a statement. “State Parks looks forward to working with the community, scientists, and environmental stewards to build resilience to sea-level rise and extreme event impacts so that more generations can continue to fall in love with Seacliff State Beach.”