The Lost Coast is a magic stretch of the Pacific where Highway 1/101 cuts in from the coast and a network of small paved and dirt roads remain faithful to the ocean. The route starts in Ferndale, just south of Eureka, and goes through Honey Dew, a tiny town with only a general store, and Shelter Cove, a great place for fresh fish and chips.
It could not have been better riding conditions. The temperature was between 70-95F depending on whether you were on the coast or one ridge inland. Usal road is the dirt section, and I only saw 3 adventure motorcycles and a fire crew putting out a small brush fire.
I drove the road once before and had my eye on the remote beach that is 6 miles from the southern end. I decided to return, and spend an extra day relaxing at the beach as a perfect way to spend the penultimate 2 days of the trip.
In the evening, I met Berhard and Michelle Leitner and their dog Atlas, who are traveling in a 6 wheel, Austrian Pinzgauer. He designed and built the offroad trailer himself, which is an absolute work of art with every conceivable amenity. They were extremely kind and invited me to a pork chop, broccoli, and quinoa feast.
While reading on the beach the next day, entertainment arrived in the form of a Subaru Outback that foolishly attempted to drive in the deep sand and needed to be pulled out by Berhard’s Pinzgauer and later a VW van that met the same fate. I also had a fascinating conversation with Bob, who metal detects and filled me in on the history of the spot as a large logging settlement in the late 1800s.
The start of Usal road. Note 12 cans of 21st Amendment beer strapped to top
The first ruts are the ones that I dropped my bike in when it was muddy the prior trip
Berhard’s Pinzgauer and home built trailer