Here on Sands beach, at the end of December, it's bright and sunny. The coast line here, near Santa Barbra, lies uniquely east to west - pushed sideways due to shifting tectonic plates. So the sun comes up and goes down over land and not the sea.
This slow push of millimeters each year adds up to folded mountains over the eons. Tilted layers of ancient deposits of silt and organic calcium are now pushed from horizontal to vertical. The ocean cuts in to these layers and makes for a dramatic beach. Above is a cave on Sands beach.
The images immediately above and below are from the beach at Gaviota State Park. Both distinct and dramatic, the layers of rock include some Radiolarian Chert - rocks made from deposits of tiny prehistoric sea creatures called Radiolaria. A quick search shows how detailed these tiny guys were!
Looking up Goleta, where UCSB is located I find -