Beach sand consists of mineral particles, rock fragments, and biogenic materials. Together, these materials comprise long stretches of coastline, hosting beautiful and functional habitats. Sandy beaches provide homes for a diverse set of organisms, boosts local economies/tourism, and provide a buffer to coastal erosion (Barbier et al., 2011). Coastal erosion emerges as likely the most valuable service provided by sandy beaches, given evidence of global sea level rise (IPCC, 2004). These concerns are heightened in places like Southern Monterey Bay, the fastest eroding coastline in California, with an average erosion rate of 0.8 m/year from 1945 to 1998 (Hapke et al., 2006). This is just one example of how understanding coastal sediments and their processes provides decision-makers with the necessary tools to responsibly manage dynamic coastlines.