Mendonoma: Ft Bragg-Noyo Headlands-Glass Beach Coastal Trail Hike

Sunday, July 19, 2015

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Surrounded by the spectacular natural beauty of Northern California’s redwood forests and the Pacific Ocean, Fort Bragg is the ideal destination for both visitors and  small businesses. Located in Mendocino County, this is the largest town on the scenic coast between San Francisco and Eureka. This city, with its historic downtown, offers a unique blend of natural resources, recreation and scenery. (2015 Mendocino Coast Vistors Guide) 

Fort Bragg Downtown Area-Main St:

The Noyo Headlands Park trailhead and parking lot are located at the west end of Elm Street adjacent to Glass Beach. A new 8-foot wide paved trail extends along more than a mile of carefully restored coastal bluff drainage, soils and tender native seedlings with access to a stretch of coastline that has been behind the fences of the former mill site for more than a century. The trail is open from dawn until dusk. Visitors can also enjoy the new interpretive panels that tell the history of the mill site and of Fort Bragg’s logging past.  The mill site owners still retain a large portion of the land east of the trail, which is undergoing environmental remediation required prior to sale or development.  Please do not trespass or enter fenced-in areas.(

Ft Bragg Coastal Trail-Noyo Headlands: follow the trail along the bluff to the bench at the south end near Soldier Point.

Noyo Headlands coastal views:

Glass Beach Cove# 2: There are actually three glass beaches  — all former city trash dump sites — that cough up beautiful sea glass. Search for rare ruby reds (from pre-1967 auto tail lights) or sapphire gems from apothecary bottles. Snap a photo, but leave the glass behind for others to discover. From 1906 to 1967, everything from cars to batteries to bottles, cans and appliances were unceremoniously pushed over the cliffs into the ocean — a common practice of seaside cities for centuries. Mother Nature responded to this abuse with a nice surprise in the form of smooth, colored sea glass treasure in a rainbow of colors. (

A stop at Glass Beach Cove#1-this cove is located at the north end of the park and has very little glass.

Reverse way back to parking lot:

Have a hearty breakfast and take a walk along the scenic Coastal Trail at Noyo Headlands and visit Glass Beach-take your time and enjoy the spectacular coastline, it’s a wonderful way to spend the morning! This walk can easily be extending by continuing on the Coastal Trail/Old Haul Rd Trail off Glass Beach Dr-cross the new Pudding Creek Trestle and follow the trail along the bluff into MacKerricher State Park-you can turn around at any point on the trail.

1.7 Miles with 85′ of elevation gain
Time: 1-1.5 hrs with a few stops at the Glass Beach Coves
Hike: Easy
Parking: No Fee at Noyo Headlands Park parking lot at the end of Elm St in Ft Bragg
Pit Toilets-NO WATER
Dog Friendly
Bring water & food/snacks

Weather: Sunny and warm with temps ranging from the low to high 70’s with NW winds

View the interactive RGPS route map & profile

Noyo Headlands


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