Home to the 2.5 Mile Ecological Staircase Trail, this hiking area proudly boasts of three terraces built by wave erosion over several thousands of years. Highway 1 traverses the grounds, separating the two towns of Fort Bragg and Mendocino. The highway runs the length of the Pacific Ocean until it meets the Jackson Demonstration State Forest.
The area is well-known for its mild climate. Dogs are welcome to visit Jug Handle State Preserve with their families, but they must remain leashed. Since no on-site dog amenities are provided and there are no bathrooms are on the premises where water could be obtained, owners must bring drinking water with them to ensure Fido remains well-hydrated.
Poop bags are not available, and thus, owners should also carry some of their own with them. It is expected that all owners will cooperate and clean up after their pets as is mandated by California law. Jug Handle State Preserve is a public recreational space. There is no cost for Fido and his family to enjoy the grounds.
Visitors who meander along the cliff regions of the hiking trails are reminded to give a wide berth to the cliff edges. It is also critically important that families never turn their back on the ocean as it is a great risk that they could be caught off guard by a powerful wave. All families are advised to stick strictly to all hiking trails as poison oak is rampant throughout the region.
Dogs are only permitted access to areas west of Highway 1. In addition to this, horses, bikes, and camping are prohibited at Jug Handle State Preserve. For families wishing to camp, there are accommodations available by reservation and for a fee at nearby Jug Handle Creek Farm and Nature Center.
The area is also home to unusual plant life including Bolanda pine, dwarf manzanita, and pygmy cypress. Park officials appreciate all dogs being up to date on vaccinations and licensed with their respective city. For a day of fun exploring an ecological treasure, plan to stop by Jug Handle State Preserve!