Map and Directions

escape frame Shelter Cove Business Directory map below

Traveling to the"lost coast" isn't a mystery! Though the Lost Coast has been "lost" for a long time it has been somewhat discovered. If you are traveling by car, your best directions from the south would be to travel up US Highway 101 from San Francisco through Santa Rosa and on north to the Redwoods. You will turn off the freeway at the small resort town of Garberville, the second off ramp. Turn to the left crossing the freeway and continue about 2 miles to an even smaller town of Redway. At the other end of the town is Shelter Cove Road (Briceland Rd.) a street / road turning to the left (by a Restaurant). If traveling from the north you will be traveling south on Highway 101. You will travel through such towns as Eureka, Fortuna, along the "Avenue of the Giants" and Humboldt State Redwood Park. Take the Redway off ramp continue along to Redway and turn onto the Shelter Cove Road (Briceland Rd.) a street / road turning to the right (by a Restaurant). The road to Shelter Cove is out of town to the west. Continue across the Ell river and through the Whitemore Grove of giant redwoods. Shelter Cove is west for a total of 23 miles. You will pass though the hamlet of Briceland,  then Whitethorn (few amenities), finally over two mountains in 5 miles. When descending both of these mountains remember you must use your low gears (your brakes will heat up and disappear), this applies to cars and trucks with automatic transmissions. No exceptions!  Walla! You have arrived at the "Cove"!
One can also arrive at the Lost Coast from the Highway 1, north of Fort Bragg, West Port, and Rockport. Just before the Highway 1 turns inland toward Leggett just north of Rockport, one must look for a small gravel road turning to the left. This road is a Mendocino County road named Usal RoadThere are signs telling you not to travel on it with RV's. The road is passable most summers. Cars, motorcycles and bicycles (mountain type) are okay during most summers, it  is not advised for travel except with the possible exception of 4x4 trucks in the winter, as the road can have slides, water running across the road and trees that have fallen on the roadway. There are no amenities all the way to Shelter Cove and there are no people along most of the road. You will travel though and along the Sinkyone Wildlife Park and to the Humboldt County border at "Four Corners." "Four Corners" is the intersection of the car trail to the north gate of Sinkyone State Park, the Whitethorn/Briceland Road, the Chemise Mountain Rd., and Usal Road, Chemise Mountain Road heads on to Shelter Cove road. Turn left on Shelter Cove Road and over the mountain (4 miles to ocean).  This way to Shelter Cove is closed for long periods of the season, so check signs and locals. middle.gif (53451 bytes)
Traveling from Ferndale south one can travel on paved roads to Honeydew (last gas and store) and south along the Mattole river. When you continue on to Ettersberg (no town) you will find that the road changes off and on to gravel. You will come out on Shelter Cove Road before Whitethorn, turn to right and about 10 miles to ocean.

There are other roads that lead up though the mountains from the Mattole Valley some seasonal and some not, one should use these roads with a map and even local recommendations, it is difficult to direct you in this article. One road will take you up to the top of Paradise Ridge between Kings and Queens peaks. These roads are mostly gravel. Again there are no amenities till you get to Shelter Cove.

All roads offer beautiful wilderness scenery and great access to nature and at times vistas and camping.

The included link will take you to a "Cal Trans" page telling you about the California Highway Conditions (map of highways) . This is valuable after storms, flooding roadwork, fire season, etc. Eureka site includes the county roads, local state and federal highways. 

This map includes Northern California Coast (Northern part of Mendocino County and Most of Humboldt County. Sorry about the quality of the map but I had to create it, as there are few maps of the area that aren't copyrighted, or have such poor detail in our area, that they are unusable. See you on the beach........