Hiking & Biking
Miles of trails in a number of nearby state parks
Our own loop trail takes you above a fern canyon and out to spectacular views of the bay
Bike rentals are an easy walk from the campground
30’ Waterfall hike at Russian Gulch State Park (3.7miles north)
You can rent bikes at Catch A Canoe (and Bicycles Too) right across the road from our property. You can bike around Mendocino Village, on Big Rivern trail, or along the ocean on Ten Mile Beach Trail 14 miles north in Fort Bragg. Hikers enjoy a variety of options, from local state beaches along the coast or inland through dense redwood forests—see our favorites below.
In general, all local state beaches also offer the opportunity to embark on a beautiful hike, either along the coast or inland through dense redwood forests.
Paths and trails are available for every level, from rigorous day-long hikes with steep ascents to tranquil walks through fern canyons, pygmy forests and old-growth redwoods. The surrounding state parks have extensive trails, or there are many local free trails with easy access. Not a hiker? Check out the paddleboards, kayaks and outrigger canoes at Catch a Canoe, just a short walk from the campground. For those who like to fish, ask us for recommendations for fresh or saltwater excursions.
Mendocino Grove Loop Trail (on campus)
This 1/2 mile loop circles the campground and is a great way to familiarize yourself with the area. Expect beautiful views over fern gully, winding passages through a forest of bishop pines, spectacular views of the ocean, and a good ascent past Ocean Vista viewing deck to a welcoming meadow and hammock.
Spring Ranch (1/4 miles south on Highway 1 at Gordon Lane)
In 2017, this historic property opened a public access hiking trail. As you embark on the 3 mile out-and-back hike, enjoy fields of prairie grass, gorgeous ocean vistas, wildflowers, tide pools, a sandy cove beach, and plenty of wildlife.
Van Damme State Park (1/2 miles south)
Fern Canyon Trail is our go-to hike in the area. The 5 mile out-and-back takes you through a fern canyon alighted on either side with towering redwoods and meandering streams to the curiosity of the Pygmy Forest, where trees can’t grow much taller than 3 feet.
Big River State Park (1/4 miles north)
The campground neighbors one of the most popular beaches and riverfront parks in the area. A 16 mile return fire trail along the river is great adventure either on foot or mountain bike – and it goes without saying that a canoe trip up this historic river is an adventure you will not forget. Mountain bikes and beautiful out-rigger canoes are available to rent at Catch-a-Canoe, just a short walk from the campground.
Mendocino Headlands Trail (3/4 miles north)
This beautiful bluff trail is accessible from all points of Mendocino Village. It meanders around the town and is the perfect trail to walk, jog, whale watch and explore nearby tide pools and beaches.
Russian Gulch State Park (3.7 miles north)
The 6+ mile Fern Canyon to Falls Trail is a must when visiting the area. The loop trail takes you through fern meadows and towering redwoods, over meandering streams, to a spectacular year-round 36-foot waterfall, making this one of our favorite hikes.
Point Cabrillo Light Station State Park (4 miles north)
A paved walking path takes you from the parking lot to a beautiful lighthouse, which has been designated as “one of the most complete light stations in the United States.” Since 2011, a trail now takes you to Caspar Headlands State Beach one mile to the north, passing Frolic Cove along the way.
Caspar Headlands State Beach (5.2 miles north)
A beautiful new trail now leads from Caspar South to Point Cabrillo Lighthouse State Park.
Jug Handle Beach & Reserve (6 miles north)
This reserve features the Ecological Staircase Trail, which covers varying micro-ecosystems and measures 5 miles from beach to pygmy forest and back.
MacKerricher State Park (14 miles north)
MacKerricher spans 10 miles of coastline from Glass Beach in Fort Bragg to Ten Mile River. The old paved Haul Road (closed to motor vehicles) offers access to miles of coastal walking, and there are boardwalk trails through prairie bluffs.