Wrong Turn Leaves Driver Stranded on Sand Near Encinitas

"I was going five miles an hour in the dark and I ran out of real estate," the driver told NBC 7 blaming the misdirection on her vehicle's GPS.

A Mercedes driver’s wrong turn left her stranded on the sand, wedged between a bluff and a stone wall just a few feet from the ocean.

Encinitas lifeguards say it was around 8 a.m. when they found a woman and two cats inside the car parked at the bottom of a beach-access road used by surfers and others to get to the sand.

It appears the woman drove off South Coast Highway 101 just north of San Elijio campground, realized she had driven onto the sand and tried to turn around.

The driver, who told NBC 7 her name was Lisa, blamed her GPS for providing wrong directions.

"I was going five miles an hour in the dark and I ran out of real estate," she said.

She said she was on the way to the state campgrounds nearby when GPS led her astray.

No one was hurt -- not even the cats who stayed the night in the car with her. Lisa told NBC 7 she slept like a baby.

The Mercedes suffered minimal damage - just a few front-end bumps and some scratches on the back passenger side.

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"You know, if you're going to go wrong.... I ended up on the beach. It was beautiful. I got out. I decided to wait for the sun to come out so I went to sleep in my car," Lisa said.

She told NBC7 she was not intoxicated or under the influence when she went the wrong way. She said she would not be going camping anymore.

Tow company drivers were able to drive the car back up the access ramp without incident. California park rangers were the only authorities present as the scene was cleared up, and it does not appear the woman will be in any legal trouble over the incident.

The asphalt path to the beach can be accessed through the San Elijo north day use parking lot.

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