This part of Pacifica is built at beach level -- perhaps on old backshore dunes. But just as with the bluffs shown in the previous post, this beach has been subject to significant erosion. For this and many parts of the California coast - the El Nino of the 1982-83 winter was a tough one. The community has gone through a few iterations of fortifications and is now perched behind a high seawall with a big rock apron.
It was a blustery day (the photos were taken on December 21st), waves were building, but the tide was not particularly high. I suspect these were pretty tame conditions and certainly not enough to discourage the fishermen.