Get Lost on the Lost Coast
Six miles south of Benbow, in Leggett, California, Pacific Coast Highway or Hwy 1 comes to an abrupt end. Highway 101 will pick up the slack and hug the shoreline north of Arcata on a picturesque drive of headlands rising from the Pacific as you drive to Orick. But that still leaves 80 miles of wilderness shoreline, not easily accessible from any highway. Called the Lost Coast, it is the longest undeveloped coastline in the continental United States. Yesterday, we took the twisting and turning Bryceland-Thorn Road from Redway to the remote village of Shelter Cove. At this small coastal community, houses hug the shoreline backed by flanks of forest and high headlands that make up the King Range National Conservation Area. Backpackers can take the rugged 25-mile Lost Coast Trail, while day-trippers should head to the crescent-shaped black sand beach. Fishing trawlers were docked in the bay, also popular with stand-up paddleboarders and several surfers. If you want to leave behind the woes of modernity and de-stress on a serene stretch of Californian coast, consider spending some time at the Inn of the Lost Coast.