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La Jolla’s bluffside ‘secret swing’ is no more

People use the makeshift "secret swing" tied to a tree on the bluffs next to Coast Walk Trail earlier this year.
(Ashley Mackin-Solomon)

It isn’t clear who removed the swing from a tree downslope of Coast Walk Trail, but the president of the nonprofit that supports the trail says she’s happy about it.

The “secret swing,” a makeshift rope and tire or plank hanging from a tree overlooking the bluffs beside La Jolla’s Coast Walk Trail, has been removed.

“I have no idea who took it down, [but] it’s a great thing,” said Brenda Fake, president of the nonprofit Friends of Coast Walk Trail, which works to maintain and preserve the scenic walking trail. “I have been bugging the city to remove it because it is an attractive nuisance.”

Representatives of the city of San Diego could not immediately be reached for comment this week about the removal and whether the city was involved.

City spokesman Anthony Santacroce said earlier this year that the tree with the swing is “not on the trail but downslope from the trail. ... The [city] Transportation Department doesn’t maintain trees on this rocky slope.”

The swing, installed by trail-goers and not sanctioned by the city, was not accessed by any formal walkway or path.

Fake said the swing attracted people who would climb over a fence to reach it and often engage in unsafe behavior, including having fires. She said that was a particular problem because of dead and dying trees in the area.

In March, Fake said she was worried that a palm weevil infestation that appeared to be affecting trees near the swing could eventually kill or weaken the tree with the swing.

“I tell people that it is dangerous, but people are down there all the time,” she said at the time. “I tell them using the swing is at their own risk.”

A sign directs visitors not to stray beyond the trail boundaries. ◆