We’re not talking about naughty wild, but about wilderness wild. If you’re visiting Fort Bragg and the Mendocino coast soon, you might be interested in some of the best kept secrets here on the coast. A smallish secret that we just discovered ourselves is that Oakland based Black Oak Wilderness School is offering classes at a private campsite at Fortunate Farm in Caspar, just down the road from Fort Bragg. We’ve long been admirers of the wonderful work that Fortunate Farm does in the community. They outfitted their gorgeous barn into a place for inland fire victims to enjoy hot meals and clean beds last summer. We enjoyed a farm-to-table dinner at that same barn in the fall, and Gowan Batist from the farm also works with local B Corp North Coast Brewing Company to supply organic vegetables and model regenerative agriculture. Now we see that the farm is hosting Black Oak courses like Intro to Survival May 18-20, and a Skills Campout May 25-28.
“I’ve taken several of Black Oak Wilderness
Mendocino Land Trust Trails and Views
The Mendocino Land Trust has just created a cool little guide to trails along the Mendocino Coast from north to south, including the little known gem, Belinda Point Trail just south of Fort Bragg. It’s a simple one-mile round trip to a lovely rocky cove – just head down Ocean Drive south of the Botanical Gardens and you’ll come upon a little fence on your right that opens to the trail. It’s a quiet, unspoiled trail just 5 minutes south of downtown Fort Bragg!
The Hare Creek Beach Trail begins at the south end of the Mendocino College parking lot. You’ll travel south to Bay View Drive and follow the trail to a secluded sandy “pocket” beach. If you don’t feel like getting out of the car, you can park at the Noyo Harbor Viewpoint for a splendid view of the Noyo harbor from North Harbor Drive.
Unbeaten Path and Segway Tours
If you’re feeling even more ambitious, you might want to try an Unbeaten Path nature tour guided by Margaret Lindgren. She does tours up and down the Mendocino coast, and we bet she could create a custom tour with some hidden gems right here in the Fort Bragg area, too. A dynamic guide and accomplished yoga instructor, she now offers tour and yoga combination retreats; her tours have even been endorsed by the actress Diane Keaton.
Don’t forget you can Segway instead of sashay along the coastal trails in Fort Bragg with North Coast Segway guided tours, a fresh air experience that is fun and educational. You’ll learn a lot about the flora and fauna, history and ecology of our remarkable coastal town.
If you’d like a to find a taste of the wilderness at the edge of town, you’ll find walking trails, picnic tables and a creek among the redwoods at Otis R. Johnson Park at the east end of Laurel Street. You can walk from downtown and find yourself far from the madding crowd until the sun starts to go down. Then we suggest you head back to the beach to capture one of our spectacular Fort Bragg sunsets!