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California Love: On Top of the World on Mattole Road

On the west end of town in Ferndale stands a gate with an arrow pointing towards Capetown and Petrolia. This is Mattole Road. If you’re curious enough to hook that turn and head up the little road with no line up the middle, you will be handsomely rewarded with treasure.

Now, you won’t get your reward all at once. Like the plot of a good book, it will make itself known with a slow build.

The narrow road begins with an ascent into the trees. In many places the road seems like it’s barely wide enough for two cars to pass each other. But it feels just right for a motorcycle.

The draw of the road, the landscape – they give the distinct sensation that you are somewhere else in the world. Can this possibly be the same California I grew up seeing on television?

Climbing gradually, you crest into golden rolling hills.

The road gently coerces you to slow down, to take your time and drink it. Save for a few lucky cows who have the greatest grazing place on Earth there doesn’t seem to be another soul around.

Before long, you will find yourself looking out to the edge of the world. The horizon line gets on its tippy-toes, peeks over the curve of the land and beckons you to come down to put your toes in the ocean.

Once there, you have the beach all to yourself. Now, if that isn’t a treasure, I don’t know what is.

This feeling of expanse, of freedom,.. this place – I cannot help but cherish it. This lost coast is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been.

Mattole Rd Photo Gallery

  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • DCIM\100GOPRO
  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • DCIM\101GOPRO
  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • DCIM\101GOPRO
  • DCIM\100GOPRO
  • DCIM\100GOPRO
  • DCIM\100GOPRO
  • DCIM\100GOPRO
  • DCIM\100GOPRO
  • DCIM\100GOPRO
  • fuzzygalore's photo
  • fuzzygalore's photo

Comments

Anthony
Reply

After editing some of my ride footage this morning, yours is freaking me out because now you are on the wrong side of the road :)

Kari
Reply

Mattole Road. I’ve heard tales. It’s well within reach for us, perhaps a long weekend trip. Beautiful.
Thanks for taking us along :)

Fuzzygalore
Reply

Do it, Kari-
You won’t be disappointed :)

Crudmop
Reply

Without a doubt, Mattole rd is in my top 5 roads, ever. It’s the way the coast route should be – out there it’s really just you and the road, with maybe an occasional cow. Simply fantastic.

Arc
Reply

Awesome. I love that road. And the Tiger is the perfect bike for it. Twisty and bumpy in certain areas, that Tiger eats it right up. Need to go back there ASAP.

George
Reply

I should have gone there but we just passed the Humboldt Redwoods State Park and continued north on the 101.
I’m jealous, next time :-)

Fuzzygalore
Reply

That’s the great thing about this big blue marble – there is always something more to see :)

eric
Reply

Love this article. I am something of a Lost Coast expert. No matter what the angle or the time of day the pics of this area always captivate me.

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