Guest contributor: Brian Scates on the Lost Coast of Northern California
The Lost Coast is an area of Northern California left as largely unadulterated wilderness as a result of coastal Highway 1 being diverted inland due to the difficult terrain. The sparse population of ranchers and other agrarian folks who lived in the area were spared the traffic that the approximately 80 miles of highway would have brought. So it’s basically a tiny little general store there surrounded by the odd ranch or home, and is more or less wilderness with occasional cows.
That, and amazing views! I started the morning with a quick tour through Redwood Forest about 40-50 miles north, then headed down to the tiny town of Ferndale. On the far side of this little town is a road to Pertrolia, the sight of the first oil discovery in California and the ‘hub’ if you will of the Lost Coast area. After getting out there on the paved roads, I started exploring the unmarked (and unpaved) ones, which is where things got even better.
I’d rate the trails as easy to moderate. One of the ones I went out on had a sign saying 4WD only, and that it was closed in the winter, and definitely was not suitable for ‘normal’ cars. That was really great fun exploring, and I hardly saw any other people while out there. The trek exits out through more giant redwood trees in Humboldt Redwoods State Park, which is a nice little cherry on top.
I spent the day exploring the Lost Coast with my dog, Xerox. These are the photos from our adventure.
Words and images: Brian Scates
Brian Scates is a design-centric entrepreneur living in San Francisco.