You're one lucky hiker if you live near the Mendocino Headlands State Park in California with your pup. This beautiful stretch of rugged coastline has a puptasticly furiendly trail where you can go on walkies with your doggo. If you want to trek the full four miles of the trail, park in the lot just along the street from the Ford House Visitor Center on Main Street, Mendocino. Leash your fur buddy, and you'll be ready for a hike along the clifftops. You can access one of the trailheads directly from the parking lot or from the nearby visitor center itself. You'll find a public restroom by the visitor center if you need one. There are no facilities actually on the trail, so if the weather is warm, take some water for your pup.
For a shorter hike, you can access the trail from the parking lot at the end of Little Lake Street or Heeser Drive. Once you're on the trail, it's ocean views all the way. And they're impressive! You'll hear the squawk of seabirds circling overhead and the sound of the waves crashing against the rocks below. If you're there with your fur buddy in springtime, you'll find the grassy headlands vibrant with the colors of wildflowers. It's a beautiful sight. The trail narrows to single track on some of the bluffs, and there are steep drops either side, so keep your pup on a reasonably tight leash.
There are shady spots on the trail where it winds through tall pine trees, Mendocino pygmy cypress, and wind-twisted coastal redwoods. You'll come across a blowhole, the ruins of an old lumber mill, and best of all, tracks which lead down to small, secluded beaches. Yes, you are allowed on them with your fur baby so long as you keep your pup on their leash. Don't pick up any driftwood though as it's protected by state law. This hike is pawsome – enjoy it!