Recommend me places to camp in Mendocino, CA

I’m looking for something a little off the beaten path, but not a hike through 20 backcountry miles. A secluded stretch of beach would do just fine. Thanks.


There’s a stretch out there called the Lost Coast. I’ve camped at both ends of it.

Mattole Beach is at the northern end.

Usal Beach is at the southern end.


The Lost Coast Trail is about 25 miles. At Usal Beach heading north, it’s a gorgeous up and down trail that skirts the tops of bluffs overlooking the ocean and plunges into redwood valleys. I counted over 30 different kinds of wildflowers, in August. The beach itself has got some black sand.

At Mattole, the Trail is on the beach. A great hike, but hard because of the sand. There is a part where you can’t continue at high tide. We hiked about five miles in from both ends, so I have no idea what the middle 15 miles are like.

Good luck, though, if you are looking for seclusion. At Usal we had some yeehaws blasting Van Halen, and even worse, talking about it. "Ya this part comin up is so bitchen, where Eddie goes “needler needler nee.” Also saw a yeehaw throw a rock at his dog, who while (illegally) off his leash was trying to follow him and his female. This is a place where you have to drive a buncha miles on a shitty dirt road to get to. Mattole had a few folks, but they were much better behaved.

California is funny. You think you are in the middle of nowhere, haven’t seen hide nor hair of anybody for miles, and you turn into a campground and it’s full. Someone told me the locals often congregate in themto to drink all weekend. I believe it. Go, though. It’s so awesome and beautiful.