Sandy beach
Yes
Hike-in Required
No
Surfing
No
Snorkeling / SCUBA
No
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Luffenholtz beach is a great place to observe the beauty of the Pacific Ocean while relaxing and exploring one of Northern California's more solitary beach environments.  The beach is best during low tide, and visitors should be cautious during high tide as the beach becomes mostly covered by waves.

After hiking down the short and steep access trail, Luffenholtz Beach stretches out before you. While the beach is not desirable for surfing or swimming, it is perfect for summer picnics, beachcombing for shells, and tide pooling. You are almost guaranteed to find a variety of local creatures living in the tide pools, including crabs, sea urchins, starfish, mussels, and sea snails. The beach is a great place to enjoy a Pacific sunset, and the various rocks protruding from the ocean are distinctive photographic subjects.

A small creek feeds into the ocean during the winter months, and beachcombing is available year-round. There are no bathroom facilities or trash cans on the beach. The nearest facilities are located just down the road at Luffenholtz Park (which also is the overflow parking lot, as there are only a few spots near the trailhead). While not the optimum spot to search for gray and humpback whales, sightings do occur, and local seals are often spotted bobbing up and down in the waves. A variety of local seabirds are regularly in attendance on the beach and surrounding sea rocks, including the tufted puffin, Leach's storm-petrel, snowy plover, and the fork-tailed storm petrel.

Logistics + Planning

Congestion

Moderate

Parking Pass

Not Required

Pros

Beautiful views of the Pacific Ocean. Solitude. Beachcombing.

Cons

Steep trail. Limited parking.

Features

Fishing
Tide pools
Wildlife
Whale watching
Wildlife
Tide pools

Location

Field Guide

Nearby Lodging + Camping

Comments

06/13/2014
Some more rugged coast worth driving too if exploring one of the nearby Redwood parks.
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