The Lost Coast is a remote and rugged area in northern California that is known for its beautiful beaches and wilderness. It is a popular destination for backpacking and offers a number of trails that take you through the park’s stunning natural beauty.
Hiking the Lost Coast Trail
Day 1: Arrival in Shelter Cove Upon arrival in Shelter Cove, the starting point for the Lost Coast Trail, spend some time exploring the area and getting organized for your hike. Make sure you have all the necessary gear and supplies, including sturdy hiking shoes, a waterproof jacket, plenty of food and water, and a map or GPS device.
Day 2: Hike from Shelter Cove to Mattole Beach Today, start your hike from Shelter Cove and head north along the Lost Coast Trail. The trail follows the rugged coastline, offering breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean, towering cliffs, and pristine beaches. After a few hours of hiking, you will reach Mattole Beach, where you can camp for the night.
Day 3: Hike from Mattole Beach to Sea Lion Gulch Today, continue your hike along the Lost Coast Trail, heading further north towards Sea Lion Gulch. The trail follows the coast, passing through dense forests, rugged cliffs, and pristine beaches. As you hike, be on the lookout for wildlife, including whales, seals, and sea lions. After a long day of hiking, set up camp at Sea Lion Gulch for the night.
Day 4: Hike from Sea Lion Gulch to Punta Gorda Today, continue your hike along the Lost Coast Trail, heading north towards Punta Gorda. The trail continues to follow the coast, offering stunning views of the ocean and rugged coastline. As you hike, be on the lookout for wildlife, including sea otters and bald eagles. After a long day of hiking, set up camp at Punta Gorda for the night.
Day 5: Hike from Punta Gorda to Usal Beach Today, continue your hike along the Lost Coast Trail, heading north towards Usal Beach. The trail continues to follow the coast, passing through dense forests, rugged cliffs, and pristine beaches. As you hike, be on the lookout for wildlife, including deer and elk. After a long day of hiking, set up camp at Usal Beach for the night.
Day 6: Hike from Usal Beach to Black Sands Beach Today, continue your hike along the Lost Coast Trail, heading north towards Black Sands Beach. The trail continues to follow the coast, passing through dense forests, rugged cliffs, and pristine beaches. As you hike, be on the lookout for wildlife, including whales and sea otters. After a long day of hiking, set up camp at Black Sands Beach for the night.
Day 7: Hike from Black Sands Beach to Shelter Cove Today, complete your hike along the Lost Coast Trail, heading south back to Shelter Cove. The trail retraces your steps, offering one last chance to take in the breathtaking views of the coast and rugged wilderness. After a long day of hiking, celebrate your successful journey with a well-deserved meal and rest in Shelter Cove.
In conclusion, the Lost Coast Trail is a truly unforgettable hiking experience. With its rugged wilderness, stunning views, and abundance of wildlife, it is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in outdoor adventure and coastal exploration. Whether you are a seasoned hiker or a first-time adventurer, the Lost Coast Trail is sure to leave you with a lifetime of memories and a deeper appreciation for the natural beauty of northern California. Just be sure to come prepared, as this is a rugged and remote hike that requires physical fitness and proper gear.
What to Know before Backpacking the Lost Coast
- Get a map: A map of the Lost Coast is essential for planning your trip and navigating the trails. You can purchase a map or download one from the internet.
- Know your route: The Lost Coast has several backpacking trails, including the Lost Coast Trail and the King Range National Conservation Area. It’s important to research the trails and choose one that is suitable for your experience level and the length of time you have available.
- Pack wisely: The Lost Coast is a remote area, and it’s important to be prepared for the trip. Be sure to bring plenty of food, water, and supplies, including a first aid kit, a map, and a compass.
- Know the weather: The weather in the Lost Coast can be unpredictable, and it’s important to be prepared for a range of conditions. Be sure to check the weather forecast and pack accordingly.
- Know the terrain: The Lost Coast is a rugged area with a variety of terrain, including beaches, cliffs, and forests. Be sure to research the terrain and pack appropriate clothing and footwear.
- Know the wildlife: The Lost Coast is home to a variety of plant and animal species, including bears and mountain lions. Be sure to research the wildlife and take appropriate precautions to protect yourself and the animals.
- Leave no trace: The Lost Coast is a protected area, and it’s important to respect the natural resources and leave no trace of your trip. Be sure to follow Leave No Trace principles, such as packing out all of your trash and staying on designated trails.
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