Crash Cove is one of the first tracks available to play in Adventure Mode, along with Roo's Tubes, and is located in the N. Sanity Beach world section. The track itself is based heavily on the beach's design.
Crash Cove is the first racetrack in the game and the first kart racetrack in the series, and, as the name suggests, is the home track of the series' main character, Crash Bandicoot. In adventure mode, it is the first track in the Red Gem Cup, followed by Mystery Caves, Papu's Pyramid and Blizzard Bluff. In arcade mode, it is the first track in the Wumpa Cup, alongside Tiger Temple, Blizzard Bluff and Coco Park.
As the first racetrack in the game and one of the first two available to race in Adventure Mode, Crash Cove is an easy race to play with a simple layout to allow the player to get used to the controls of the game. As such, the track introduces the elements that are frequent in races, such as crates lined up in rows of four, shortcuts, ramps and environmental hazards (i.e. the water).
The track begins with a straight line that is eventually separated by a large rock. This is followed by a left turn, so it is advised to steer left of the rock (unless in a CTR Race, as the 'R' letter is located on the right). After the left turn, racers will have the option of using a ramp. It is advised to jump off the ramp for several reasons - it offers the chance for a hang-time turbo boost, and there are two Wumpa Fruit crates on the jump. After this, racers must drive under a bridge, which can be tricky as it is easy to crash into the bridge support.
A shortcut is also available here that allows racers to avoid driving under the bridge. If a racer were to use the hang-time turbo boost from the ramp's jump to land in the water, they could jump off a smaller under the water's surface to jump onto a grassy ledge next to the main track, before hopping back onto the main track. This is handy for shaving off a few seconds and eliminates the risk of crashing into the bridge. The shortcut is also necessary for the CTR challenge, in order to get the 'T' letter.
After this, racers drive over a fairly long, straight bridge over the water. Racers should stick to the middle of the bridge, lest they fall off the sides into the water. After this, there is a left turn, and racers have two options. They may turn left as normal, or they could drive onto the ship that has crashed into the beach. Some racers prefer to drive onto the ship for the hang-time turbo boost from jumping off, whilst others prefer to power slide on the main track for a power slide boost. Racers must take the first option if they want the 'C' letter for the CTR challenge.
The finish line is then visible after a few turbo boost pads.
- C: The C is actually the last letter to appear in the race, as it appears near the end on the pirate ship jump. To get it, simply drive up the crashed ship and jump off at the highest point. It may be handy to power slide up the ship for an added speed boost, for extra height.
- T: The T is the second letter to appear and is considered the most difficult letter for this race. Players must use the shortcut by jumping off the first ramp and then jumping out of the water onto the grassy ledge. The T is located on the bridge. Getting the T requires players to slow down and turn around slightly, meaning that players will often fall behind the others. It is very difficult to get the letter without falling behind, so it is advisable to get the T on the first lap.
- R: The R appears right at the start. Players must steer onto the right-hand side of the rock, rather than the quicker left side. The R is nearly touching the rock, so a sharp turn is required. As with the T, the R is tricky to get without slowing down, so it is advised to go for the R on the first lap.
- Sapphire Relic: 1:17:00
- Gold Relic: 1:05:00
- Platinum Relic: 0:52:00
- In the CTR challenge, getting the "T" is only possible by taking the shortcut.
- This track was based on the Diddy Kong Racing track Crescent Island, so Naughty Dog could prove that the PS1 can display the same scale as the Nintendo 64.