South of Eureka and Honeyew in the King Range National Conservation Area, the Lost Coast Trail is a 25 mile route from Mattole in the north to Black Sands Beach in the south. This is a very popular route and can be quite crowded on the weekends. This is the most popular King Range hike offers one of the few coastal wilderness hiking experiences in the U.S. Hikers can view sea lions, tidepools and spectacular spring wildflowers. Solitude can be difficult to find on holiday weekends, so try to plan your hike during weekdays, or the less crowded spring/fall months. Allow at least three days for the entire hike. Much of the trail is beach hiking with several stretches of 1-2 ft. rounded boulders. Wear sturdy hiking boots. Stream crossings may be impassible during/after heavy winter rains (no bridges).
The northern trailhead is at Mattole, which is at the western end of Lighthouse Road from Petrolia.
The area near Punta Gorda from Sea Lion Gulch to Randall Creek; and from Miller Flat to Gitchell Creek may be impassible during high tide. Carry a tide table, and when in doubt, hike these stretches during an outgoing tide to avoid being trapped.
Never turn your back on the ocean; large sleeper waves can occur at any time, sweeping unsuspecting hikers into the ocean.
To reach the trailhead from Eureka, head southeast on US101 to SR211. Head southwest on SR211 for about 30 miles to Petrolia. Just south of Petrolia on SR211 (Mattole Road), turn right heading west on Lighthouse Road for 4.7 miles to the trailhead parking area at the beach.
Overall, Lost Coast Trail is the 39th most popular hiking trail of all 88 hikes in California.