The Hare Creek Beach Trail runs parallel to Hare Creek which is located at the southern end of Fort Bragg, and on the southern side of Mendocino College, specifically at the intersection of Highways 20 and Highway 1. This eight-mile, out-and-back trail is open to tail-waggers as long as they are on a leash.
To get to the trailhead, take highway 20, and on the south side of the highway, you will find a road marked Gravel Pit Road and ample parking in this area. Follow this road for about one-fifth of a mile and get to Gate 400 where the trail starts. You and Fido can stay on course along the trail by following the creek about a mile from the trailhead. If you and your pooch love water, you can decide to take a dip in this part of the trail, or resolve to press on for another three miles along the trail and get to Banker Gulch Bridge which is at the end of the trail. At this point, you could decide to make a picnic stop before heading back, or go past the bridge and loop back to the start of the trail.
As you hike along the trail, you will experience rich biota including migratory birds that stop in this area on their journey. The rich wildlife in the area and the delicate topography inform the strict rules that dog owners need to abide by. Essentially, you are expected to protect and respect wildlife and their habitat. You must keep your pooch on a leash, and you must not leave any dirt or your dog’s waste along the trail, so be sure to bring clean up bags. There are some additional rules posted along the trail, so keep an eye out for them. Be sure to tote along some water for the trip too.
With that said, Hare Creek Beach Trail is one of the most scenic and pawrific secrets along the Mendocino coast that individuals and families including furry members can explore and have a woofderful time. If you are in the Fort Brigg area, don’t miss this scenic hike.
Some sections of the trail, especially towards the end of the trail can be too overgrown to navigate. Be cautious not to get lost.