Friday, September 18, 2009

Northern California's Mystical Lost Coast

(Koyuh hanging out on just another piece of driftwood scattered all across the lost coast)

The Lost Coast, a 35 mile stretch of coastline tucked away on the rugged Northern California Coast is truly an amazing treasure.  This past spring my girlfriend Kate & I got another chance to explore this mystical forgotten stretch of coast.  Our first trip to the Lost Coast we backpacked the southern section of the coast from Shelter Cove to Big Flat.  This trip we hiked the northern section of the Coast from Mattole to Spanish flat.

(Kate sitting with our dogs Koyuh & Ullr in a patch of abundant wildflowers)

Hiking around the lost coast is always exciting.  You can never stop taking in how preserved, lush, & prehistoric this place is.  It's the only place I have ever been to, where seeing a dinosaur wouldn't be surprising.  Both of our trips to the lost coast have occurred in the mid - late spring. The colors during this time of year are unbelievable.  Blue, green, yellow, orange, red you name it  all the damn colors of the rainbow are deeply saturated everywhere you look. Pictures & words don't do the lost coast justice.  You need to see it, smell it , hear it, & feel it for yourself.

(A lone tree on the rolling hills perched above the coastline)

Your head is always on a swivel while your exploring the lost coast.  You never want to miss anything.  There is always something to take in.  Whether it's a group of seal's sunbathing on a huge boulder in the water, or a patch of wildflowers, a smell, the sunrise & sunset, the fog. The list goes on and on.

(The lost coast can be cold & rainy.  Kate is a trooper)

On this particular trip we hiked  a good chunk of a day in cold coastal rain. Although hiking in the rain sounds pretty miserable, on the lost coast it's pretty cool. For one thing you don't see anybody on the trails.  It also keeps you cool while you hike through the hills with big 50lb packs on your back.  Most importantly, it gives you a new and interesting perspective on the coast.

(Kate takes in the views from the Punta Gorda Lighthouse)

If you haven't figured it out by now I love the lost coast.  I feel very fortunate that I have had the chance to hike and see most of the area in my two trips to the lost coast. Exploring this section of coast makes you a better person & enlightens you to the simple things in life.

(Rocky Rugged Coastline)

(Lush hillsides tones of greens with burnt contrasts)

(The Sun sets & the fog clears after a long cold rainy day on Northern California's lost coast)