July 24, 2012

The Lost Coast via Mattole Road



We set out early for the Lost Coast, as early as it gets for this crew, and headed to the village of Ferndale for breakfast at Poppa Joe's, which happened to deliver the best potatoes I've ever tasted (and locals gambling in the back of the restaurant after scarfing down waffles).

The Lost Coast of California has been a small obsession of mine ever since I heard of it's existence and Mattole Road gets you about as close as you can get to the heart of what the Lost Coast is about. It's a determined and steep and bumpy route that slices right through the territory, from the tiny villages and farms that inhabit this region, to the elevation changes and shifting weather and surreal landscape, and finally, to the Pacific Ocean, which has never felt so untamed and wild as it does out here, where footprints and paths and parking are no where to be found.

You can imagine my excitement as we left Ferndale, the start of Mattole Road, and headed into the heavy fog that enveloped the first several miles of our trip.






By the time we reached the Pacific, the fog was clearing and blue skies emerged.




The stretch of road that runs along the Pacific features a vast collection of wildflowers and rolling sand dunes and enough driftwood to burn for months. We parked off the road and found ourselves alone on a beach that ran on forever without another person around. Stella and I spent most of our exploration catching snails and putting them into little "swimming pools!" that we created. 

In all the time we spent exploring this particular stretch of road along the water, we passed one other vehicle (and it was a Saturday, in the middle of summer). This place really does feel lost.








Stay tuned for more pictures to come, including our five days in Humboldt County and four days drifting around Southern Oregon. And thanks for all the nice comments! :) 

15 comments:

Hope's Mama said...

Incredible. Will put it on my bucket list for sure. At least the US edition!

Caroline said...

So beautiful. I love the west coast but this is such an enchanting feature of it!

Gwen Jackson said...

Wow, the pictures are amazing, Josh! The Lost Coast looks invigorating. Taking in deep breaths looking at the photos, trying to capture that salty sea air. Even in the adventure, I can't help but think how peace-giving this trip must be for all of you. Lots of love!

Veronica said...

God-all-mighty...that's breathtaking!
We drove up the Coast when visiting Victoria, BC . . . But this is stunning. Great weather for the pix

Molly said...

What an amazing adventure! Love the pics!

Brooke said...

Oh that's incredible. I typically find road tripping to be less enchanting than I always imagine it will be, but you have sold me on it all over again.

Mama Bear said...

Wow. So beautiful! As an Oregonian, I have never spent time in California north of the Bay area. We are talking about making a long journey (from MN) this winter all along the West coast to (hopefully) introduce a new little one to family, friends and the wondrous Pacific!
Enjoy!

Anonymous said...

Looks like an amazing adventure!! Totally jealous!! Glad you guys are having a good time. Thanks for sharing the photos.
-love from PA
Mindy

pk said...

Amazing photos...that first one in the forest is my absolute favorite! So glad it's as awesome as you hoped.

burymylovely said...

Oh Josh, thank you thank you thank you. Your family's trip to the LC has brought back so many wonderful memories. We loved visiting Ferndale, too. What a gorgeous little part of the world. Enjoy your time in Humboldt! We enjoyed living there so much. By the way, you have inspired my husband and I to go back and visit No. Ca next summer and see our old stomping grounds. Glad you are having such a wonderful time!

Rachel said...

How fun, I'm very jealous to see water and weather presumably cold enough to wear a sweatshirt...stuck in the Midwest drought and heat over here! Great pictures!

rosaleebills said...

Gorgeous photos! Looks like you are all having a fun time too!
see you soon.

Catherine W said...

Wow! Your photographs are absolutely amazing. What amazing places especially the forest in the fog. That looks like it might be lifted directly from a fairy tale.

loribeth said...

Oh man, it's been WAY too long since I've had a west coast vacation...!

Tash said...

Such incredible scenes and photography Josh. Thank you for sharing your adventures xx

Post a Comment

Slideshow