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From sunny beaches where thousands escape the summer's heat to wild and isolated rocky cliffs, California boasts one of the most spectacular and diverse shorelines in the world. Accompanied by numerous color photographs, diagrams and maps, this guide explains why California's Pacific Coast looks and works the way it does. The author explores the dynamic forces that have created beaches and the coastline through discussions of tectonics, the formation of waves, rain and wind, changing climates and sea levels, human impacts, and coastal erosion.