North County is a region in the northern area of San Diego County, California. It is the second-most populous region in the county (after San Diego), with an estimated population of 869,322. North County is well known for its affluence, especially in Encinitas, Carlsbad, Del Mar, Rancho Santa Fe, and Solana Beach, where house prices range, on average, above $1,000,000.Cities along the 78 freeway (Oceanside, Vista, San Marcos and Escondido) have more mixed incomes.
Beach culture is prominent in the area, and many of the region's beaches and lagoons are protected areas to help ensure the environment remains pristine, though there has been pressure from commercial entities to develop some of these areas.
The name dates to at least the 1970s, when many of the communities in the area were yet to become incorporated cities and local community decisions were made 40 miles (64 km) away at the county seat. The North County section of San Diego County has historically been the most expensive region of San Diego, with such affluent neighborhoods as Aviara, Cardiff-by-the-Sea, Carlsbad, Carmel Valley, Del Mar, Encinitas, La Costa, Leucadia, Olivenhain, Rancho Santa Fe, and Solana Beach.
In modern times, North County continues to grow as a highly influential region of Greater San Diego. The top 25 employers in San Diego County are closer to the North County city of Carlsbad than San Diego proper.
North County is commonly divided into coastal and inland regions. The coastal region is almost entirely incorporated, consisting of the cities of Oceanside, Carlsbad, Encinitas, Solana Beach and Del Mar, along with Camp Pendleton South. The inland region includes the cities of Escondido, Vista, San Marcos and Poway, as well as numerous unincorporated areas. Semi-rural inland communities such as Valley Center and Ramona, which have traditionally been primarily agricultural but now function increasingly as bedroom communities for the more populous areas to their south and west, are generally included within inland North County.More remote inland communities like Julian and Borrego Springs are generally not included. Some consider communities in the northern parts of the city of San Diego like Rancho Bernardo, Rancho Peñasquitos, and Carmel Valley to be part of North County as well.
Both coastal and inland North County contain two types of topography. In coastal areas of North County, the land is generally flat with low rolling hills. The beaches are sandy with occasional tidepools and rocky reefs. In some cases, the coast is dominated by bluff type geography, where the land meeting the ocean sharply drops into the sea with a short beach. In some cases, such as in Encinitas, a whole city is bisected by a coastal foothill ridge. The foothills of mountains soon become visible as one travels further east and encounters the rocky peaks of inland North County. Such peaks include San Marcos Mountain, Palomar Mountain, Twin Peaks in Poway, Mount Woodson in Ramona, and Iron Mountain in unincorporated territory. The coastal area also becomes more rugged to the north, where the Santa Margarita Mountains dominate the area within the Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton.
North San Diego County is known as one of the most geographically diverse places on earth, with bluffs, sandy beaches, canyons and rolling hills on the coast, humid inland valleys, rocky foothills, temperate mountains, rolling grassland and large lakes and rivers in the interior, and arid deserts, lush oases and sand dunes in the far east region.
Rivers and creeks that flow west from the mountains farther inland mostly end up draining into the region's four main lagoons. Throughout their course, these rivers are interrupted by many lakes and reservoirs which support an array of native species.
Spanning 125,000 acres (510 km2) in the northwestern corner of the county, Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton forms a large buffer separating the coastal populated areas of North County from neighboring Orange County, preventing the creation of a complete coastal megalopolis stretching from Santa Monica to Imperial Beach.
The region has strong ties to its coastline and has made notable efforts to preserve many marine environments, including lagoons and tidal wetlands, many of those being the final few on the South Coast.Unlike developments in many Orange County coastal cities, the lagoons and large areas of coast have not yet been so heavily developed. Major lagoons and inlets lining the coast from north to south include: Oceanside Harbor, Buena Vista Lagoon, Agua Hedionda Lagoon, Batiquitos Lagoon and San Elijo Lagoon.
The lagoons provide valuable wetland habitat for many birds, reptiles, fish, and plant species. The waters off the coast are also very rich in species diversity, supporting large kelp forests and rocky reefs.
Fish species included the tidewater goby, topsmelt, striped mullet, surfperch and Pacific staghorn sculpin. Leopard sharks forage near the lagoons, and their pups frequent the shallow rocky reefs off the coast.
Bird species included the great blue heron, snowy plover, Ridgway's rail and least tern. The lagoons support various species of shorebirds, wading birds, waterfowl, raptors and diving birds.The number of bird species in the San Dieguito wetlands have tripled due to restoration projects by Del Mar.
The Torrey Pine is also one of the most infamous trees in the region.
North County contains forty golf courses, including Torrey Pines, which hosted the 2008 U.S. Open.North County is also known for its beaches, which stretch about thirty miles from Del Mar to San Onofre. These beaches experience a large tourist influx from June to November. Symbolic of North County's surf culture are the various statues proliferating the region including the Cardiff Kook in Cardiff-by-the-Sea. As surf culture is an integral part of North County, so is equestrian culture. Numerous equestrian centers, including the Del Mar Fairgrounds, Rancho Camino Equestrian Center, and San Diego Country Estates International Equestrian Center, are found in the region from Del Mar to San Diego Country Estates.
North County is home to Southern California's only five-star and five-diamond restaurants: Addison at The Grand Del Mar, and El Bizcocho at Rancho Bernardo Inn.
The Del Mar Fairgrounds is home to one of the most famous racetracks in the world and is the site of the annual San Diego County Fair. Shopping malls include the Westfield North County in Escondido and The Shoppes at Carlsbad in Carlsbad. The Cedros Design District in Solana Beach offers more than 85 shops, boutiques and galleries that specialize in antiques, handmade jewelry, unique artifacts, fine art, and more.Famous beaches include Moonlight Beach in Encinitas and the Oceanside Pier.
Locations in North County appear in popular television and films. Camp Pendleton is often featured in military-themed shows such as NCIS: Los Angeles , and is the setting of the first season of Major Dad . The Del Mar Fair is also portrayed in shows such as Entourage . Veronica Mars is set in a fictional city north of San Diego; much of the show was filmed in Oceanside. Other crime-related shows, such as TNT's Animal Kingdom and Netflix's American Vandal , are filmed and set in Oceanside. For two seasons the Showtime comedy Weeds was set in the fictional San Diego suburb of Ren Mar, which is implied to be in North County. The Big Bang Theory , which is set in Pasadena, features an episode ("The Zarnecki Incursion") where the main characters make a three-hour drive to Carlsbad to confront a World of Warcraft hacker.
A notable fictional character from North County is shock jock Dave Rickards' "Aunt Edna", frequently featured on the popular Dave, Shelly, and Chainsaw radio program, which airs in the San Diego area.
North County is considered[ by whom? ] wealthier and more conservative than the city of San Diego and has traditionally leaned toward the Republican Party. In recent decades, however, like many highly-educated metropolitan regions throughout the United States, the region has shifted toward the Democratic Party and political liberalism more generally. This shift has been most pronounced along the coast, while some inland communities continue to lean Republican, particularly more rural ones.
In North County, white-collar jobs outnumber blue-collar jobs at a ratio of 3:1. More people have Bachelor of Arts degrees than associate's degrees at a ratio of 2:1. More people are married than single by 2:1.Statistics compiled by the San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency reveal that coastal North County is 59% white, 18% Hispanic and 6% Asian, with blacks and people of other races less than 5%. Inland North County has roughly the same racial makeup, except that 9% are Asian. 19% of coastal North County residents make more than $100,000 per year, and 44% make less than $45,000, with the rest in the medium income range. Inland North County income stats are largely the same, except that only 42% make less than $45,000.
The populations listed are from the 2020 census.
School districts in the region include the:
School districts often overlap city boundaries. Depending on the ZIP Codes of the cities and their proximity to respective schools and school districts, school districts will serve parts of different cities.
North County is home to several colleges:
In 1995, several local newspapers merged to form the North County Times . This newspaper served the region until 2012, when it was purchased by Doug Manchester and became an edition of the San Diego Union-Tribune .On March 7, 2013, the separate U-T North County Times name was dropped and a U-T North County edition produced which further integrates U-T with North County-specific pages, while eliminating differences between the two.
In addition to being served by radio stations from San Diego and Tijuana, North County is served by FM stationsKSSX, KMYI, KLQV, KARJ, KSSD, KKLJ, and KSDW and AM stations KFSD, KPRZ, and KKSM. Several Los Angeles stations can also be picked up, including KYSR, KIIS-FM, KBIG KLYY,and KDLD
North County is served by the ABC affiliate KGTV, CBS and CW affiliate KFMB, NBC affiliate KNSD, and FOX affiliate KSWB—all San Diego stations. Other local stations include KUSI in San Diego
Important landmarks in North County include Del Mar Racetrack, Mission San Luis Rey de Francia, Lake San Marcos, Oceanside Pier, Twin Peaks, and Palomar Mountain, home of the Palomar Observatory.
North County is represented at the federal level by Representatives Darrell Issa (R–48th district), Mike Levin (D–49th district), and Scott Peters (D–50th district).
At the state level, North County is represented by State Senators Brian Jones (R–38th district), Patricia Bates (R–36th district), and Toni Atkins (D–39th district).
Most of North County is located within County Supervisorial District 5, and is represented on the county's Board of Supervisors by Jim Desmond, formerly the mayor of San Marcos. The remainder of North County is in Districts 2 and 3, represented by Joel Anderson and Terra Lawson-Remer, respectively.
Carlsbad is a coastal city in the North County region of San Diego County, California, United States. The city is 87 miles (140 km) south of downtown Los Angeles and 35 miles (56 km) north of downtown San Diego. As of the 2020 census, the population of the city was 114,746. Carlsbad is a popular tourist destination and home to many businesses in the golf industry.
The Surf Line is a railroad line that runs from San Diego north to Orange County along California's Pacific Coast. It was so named because much of the line is near the Pacific Ocean, within less than 100 feet (30 m) in some places. The tracks are now owned by the Southern California Regional Rail Authority and the North County Transit District, and hosts Metrolink's Orange County Line and Inland Empire–Orange County Line, the San Diego Coaster, and Amtrak Pacific Surfliner passenger trains. The BNSF Railway operates freight over the line using trackage rights.
Mark Bryan Wyland is a U.S. Republican politician from the state of California, who represented the 38th District in the California State Senate.
California's 49th congressional district is a congressional district in the U.S. state of California. The district is represented by Mike Levin.
The San Diego-Imperial Council is headquartered in San Diego, California, and serves youth members and volunteer leaders through Scout units in San Diego and Imperial counties of Southern California, as well as a portion of Arizona.
California's 50th congressional district is a congressional district in the U.S. state of California, and encompasses the central and northeastern parts of San Diego County and a small part of Riverside County. Scott Peters is currently the U.S. representative for California's 50th congressional district.
The North County Transit District is the agency responsible for public transportation in Northern San Diego County, California. The agency manages the COASTER commuter rail service between Oceanside and San Diego, the SPRINTER light rail service between Escondido and Oceanside, the BREEZE transit bus service, LIFT paratransit service, and FLEX on-demand and point-deviation service.
California's State Assembly districts are numbered 1st through 80th, generally in north-to-south order.
The San Diego County–Imperial County Regional Communications System, known locally as the RCS, provides wireless 800 MHz voice (radio) and data communications—on separate networks—to over 200 local, county, state, and federal public safety and public service agencies in San Diego County, California and Imperial County, California. The day-to-day operations are managed by the Wireless Services Division of the San Diego County Sheriff's Department.
Martin W. Garrick is an American politician who served in the California State Assembly from 2006 to 2012 and was Minority Leader in 2010. Garrick also served in the Reagan Administration and is a small business owner.
There are 34 routes assigned to the "S" zone of the California Route Marker Program, which designates county routes in California. The "S" zone includes county highways in Imperial, Orange, Riverside, San Diego, and Santa Barbara counties.
San Diego County, officially the County of San Diego, is a county in the southwestern corner of the U.S. state of California. As of the 2020 census, the population was 3,298,634, making it California's second-most populous county and the fifth-most populous in the United States. Its county seat is San Diego, the second-most populous city in California and the eighth-most populous city in the United States. It is the southwesternmost county in the 48 contiguous United States, and is a border county. It is also home to 18 Native American tribal reservations, the most of any county in the United States.
East County is a region of San Diego County, California, east of San Diego.
The May 2014 San Diego County wildfires were a swarm of 20 wildfires that erupted during May 2014, in San Diego County, California, during severe Santa Ana Wind conditions, historic drought conditions, and a heat wave. The main event during mid-May was preceded by a precursor fire that ignited on May 5. The Bernardo Fire has been declared accidental, and officials believe the Cocos Fire was intentionally set. The causes of the other fires are still under investigation by multiple agencies, and a joint task force was formed to coordinate the investigations and facilitate communications. Six injuries and one fire-related fatality were reported.
Before 2008, San Diego County historically had been a Republican stronghold. The Republican presidential nominee carried the county in every presidential election from 1948 through 2004, except in 1992 when Bill Clinton won a plurality. In 2008, Barack Obama became the first Democratic presidential candidate to win a majority of votes in San Diego County since World War II; he won a majority of county votes again in 2012. In 2016, Hillary Clinton won the county by almost 20%, the largest margin for a Democratic presidential candidate since 1936. In 2020, Joseph R Biden, Jr. won by an even larger 22.7% margin.
San Dieguito River Park is a greenway of 92,000-acre (37,000 ha) in San Diego County, California, United States. The park, established in 1989, stretches for 55 miles (89 km) from the mouth of the San Dieguito Lagoon to the Volcan Mountain Wilderness Preserve close to Julian, following the San Dieguito River. The park is a joint powers authority comprising the county of San Diego and cities of Del Mar, Escondido, Poway, San Diego, and Solana Beach.