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Please help me craft 10 days/9 nights between Marin and the Oregon border (with dog)

Please help me craft 10 days/9 nights between Marin and the Oregon border (with dog)

Old Jan 14th, 2022, 10:49 AM
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Please help me craft 10 days/9 nights between Marin and the Oregon border (with dog)

Hello old friends. It's been a while. Hope you're all well. Once again, I'd like your seasoned recommendations.

My husband, new little rescue dog Daisy (cutest thing you've ever seen!) and I want to take a relaxed road trip exploring the California coast between Marin and the Oregon border next month. We've lived in Southern California forever, but have never explored this area. We have 10 days/9 nights. We're in our 60's, enjoy the outdoors, nature, light hiking, food, interesting places to stay, lighthouses, whalewatching and, for this trip, anything dog friendly. We will do only a little wine tasting, and don't wish to explore Napa on this trip.

I am in the first stage of planning. We will drive inland from Westlake Village either to Marin and head north, or to the northern border and head south. I know people have their preferences on driving the coast North to South, or the reverse. What is your opinion for this stretch of coast and why? Can you suggest a loose ininterary either way? Can you suggest some of your favorite things to do/see along the way? Interesting, dog friendly places to stay? Restaurants?

As always, I'm very grateful for your input.

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Old Jan 15th, 2022, 01:10 PM
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Anyone?
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Old Jan 15th, 2022, 03:45 PM
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Stay at Victorian Mendocino and historic Ferndale. Check out the People's Republic of Arcata, the most progressive town in America. Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park is even better than the national park.
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Old Jan 15th, 2022, 03:54 PM
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Thank you so much. I'll look into all your recommendations.
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Old Jan 15th, 2022, 06:25 PM
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Big heads up . . . dogs are only allowed on leash on paved roads and in parking lots. They are not allowed on any trails in any of the Redwood State/National parks and they cannot be left in cars.

I love dogs but they definitely complicate traveling in general and visiting the parks in particular.
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Old Jan 15th, 2022, 06:35 PM
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Thanks janisj. Do you have any dog friendly favorite spots?
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Old Jan 15th, 2022, 08:26 PM
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Originally Posted by iregeo2 View Post
Thanks janisj. Do you have any dog friendly favorite spots?

Sorry -- I can't really help much. Years ago my family owned property about 5 miles north of Mendocino in Caspar, so could take my scottie and airedale over there. I'm currently 'between dogs'/dog-less but even when I had dogs I seldom took them on road trips that were 'state park heavy'. They are allowed on most State beaches -- on leash. And lots of motels up the coast are pet friendly. So accommodations shouldn't be a problem. As long as you are willing to forego hiking on trails, and stick to pavement you can enjoy the region.

Hopefully someone else will have specific suggestions for you.

ps: Daisy is sooooo cute
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Old Jan 16th, 2022, 08:58 AM
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Well, to be honest, February wouldn't be my choice of months for this trip, but if that's when you have time, go for it.

I'd actually start north of the Oregon line, around Gold Beach, and head south from there. In my view the southernmost 60 or 70 miles of the Oregon coast (roughly from Port Orford to the state line) are the most scenic, with plenty of beaches to explore (or to watch the waves crash against the rocks.) While pets must be "restrained" in state parks, on other non-park beaches they can be off-leash. See this useful site for details: 'Pawsitive' info for you and your pet's visit - Oregon State Parks

I would hustle north from Marin, probably with an intermediate stop somewhere around Eureka, to Gold Beach, spend a couple of days on the Oregon coast between Bandon and the state line, then start the return south with visits to the Jedediah Smith redwoods on US 199 just inland from US 101, then deep into the Del Norte redwoods (and parts of Redwood National Park) perhaps with a visit to the kitschy Trees of Mystery attraction. You could stay again in Eureka, or look at the very small but picturesque town of Trinidad (north of Arcata) or the extremely picturesque town of Ferndale, to the south of Eureka. The problem with both of these towns (as opposed to Eureka/Arcata) is that in February there probably won't be much variety in accommodations or food, but you can check them out. One advantage of Ferndale is that it's close to the "Lost Coast," the last remaining coastal wilderness in California. There are no roads through the area (duh) but you can skirt the edges, with a very remote feel.

A favorite dining spot in the Eureka area is the Samoa Cookhouse, a former lumber mill mess hall with comfort food served family style - a fun place. Samoa Cookhouse

Continuing south, the Avenue of the Giants byway, which parallels US 101 south of Ferndale, is a don't-miss experience, then you'll need to choose between staying on US 101 vs. heading out to the actual coast on CA Hwy 1. The town of Mendocino is an obvious stopping point, but there's plenty to see in and around Fort Bragg (including an off-leash beach) and farther down thr coast at Bodega Bay and Gualala. This site might be useful - Dog-friendly Mendocino County (dogtrekker.com)

Ordinarily I'd recommend stopping in the tiny village of Occidental, in the hills between Bodega Bay and Sebastopol, for a family-style Italian dinner at one of the landmark restaurants (Negri's and the Union Hotel) in that town, but it appears that Covid has nixed the dining rooms, so maybe that idea is off the table. You could follow the Russian River inland from Jenner to Guerneville (unless it's flooding, which happens too often) or continue south on CA 1 to Point Reyes then inland to Mill Creek. I'd probably leave detailed planning for this part of the trip until you're closer to the date, in order to have a better read on current conditions.

Here's a map showing some of the possible stopping points/destinations. Hopefully others will chime in. https://goo.gl/maps/4N3ho4yR5s6hSvxE6

Last edited by Gardyloo; Jan 16th, 2022 at 09:02 AM.
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Old Jan 16th, 2022, 09:08 AM
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You mightt take a look at Emerald Forest Cabins in Trinidad. They do have some pet cabins. Otherwise, though, dogs need to be on leash. https://www.emeraldforestcabins.com/
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Old Jan 16th, 2022, 10:01 AM
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I meant Mill Valley, not Mill Creek, which is in Washington State.
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Old Jan 16th, 2022, 10:47 AM
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janisj - She is cute, isn't she?!?! We've only had her 2 months, and she's such a good little girl. She loves to explore everything, and we have dubbed her "El Stinko, the Explorer!" She's a great little addition to our family. Rescued from a dog meat farm in Korea, we hope to give her a loving, happy life.

Gardyloo - Thank you so much! What a wealth of great information you have provided. I've already shared your suggestions with DH.

Sludick - Thank you. Emerald Forest Cabins look cozy. They remind me of Curry cabins in Yosemite, which I've always loved. Since our pup is new to us, we don't have her off leash in open areas anyway.

Very grateful for your input.
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Old Jan 16th, 2022, 03:28 PM
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One of my favorite places to stop is a bit south of Crescent City- the Klamath River Overlook. Great views of the mouth of the Klamath River where whales come to feed and frolic. There is a path down to a viewing station for closer views. There is also a trail from the parking lot that is part of the Coastal Trail system. We hiked the trail for 3 miles to Hidden Beach and arranged for a ride back to our car.
Not sure if dogs are allowed on the trail
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Old Jan 16th, 2022, 04:19 PM
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Thank you Sunbum1944. Itís going on the list.
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Old Jan 17th, 2022, 08:02 AM
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Originally Posted by iregeo2 View Post
Sludick - Thank you. Emerald Forest Cabins look cozy. They remind me of Curry cabins in Yosemite, which I've always loved. Since our pup is new to us, we don't have her off leash in open areas anyway.
Yes, a bit. We used to stay in Camp Curry on summer vacations when I was growing up. These are much less rustic inside, though, and quite comfortable. Our cabin had a slate-tiled walk in shower, but they are not "upscale," either. Set amid the redwood trees, it is peaceful. Even my hubby (who does not like camping at all was happy.
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Old Jan 17th, 2022, 09:14 AM
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Some of the yurts in Oregon State Parks are pet friendly. Two of my favorite campgrounds are Tugman and Sunset Bay (SW of Coos Bay OR). I have stayed at yurts in each of them. When renting a yurt they email you the door code to get inside.
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Old Jan 17th, 2022, 09:25 AM
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Originally Posted by tomfuller View Post
Some of the yurts in Oregon State Parks are pet friendly. Two of my favorite campgrounds are Tugman and Sunset Bay (SW of Coos Bay OR). I have stayed at yurts in each of them. When renting a yurt they email you the door code to get inside.
Thanks tomfuller.
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