Explore the most popular beach trails in Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

great long hike loved fern canyon nothing like it do bring waterproof boots or water shoes or just take off your shoes to not get your socks wet also walking stick helps while crossing the logs over the creek in the canyon

The James Irvine - Miner's Ridge loop is great for trail running (or hiking). Approximately 10 miles total. If you enter at Park Headquarters, there's no fee. If you enter at the Fern Canyon, there's a $5 vehicle fee. From Headquarters, hop off the James Irvine to Miner's Ridge for some really fun downhill running, and then you have a little less climbing on James Irvine back to the start. There is no drinking water available once you leave Headquarters, so be sure to pack accordingly. Also, depending on the season, if the creek is running high through Fern Canyon, you're going to get wet feet.

One of my absolute favorite places to run.

Long but totally worth it. What a magical expenditure!

One of my favorites. We pack home made goodies and lose ourselves in beauty. We believe in lots of water munchies an what a amazing trails

Beautiful trail! Not too strenuous but definitely not easy. We went when it was raining and overcast, which was amazing but it gets a little dark the farther you get into the trees. It’s so beautiful though! You can tell about 3/4 of the way into the trail that you start descend so that you come out where the beach is. Also, I’m not sure if we strayed off the trail at all but we came out of the trail onto a “road” where there’s still trees in front of you and you can go right or left; left takes you to the beach. It isn’t clearly marked, that we could see. It’s by far my favorite hike!

Loved this hike! A good distance. Definitely wouldn’t consider it hard. The beach slowed me down a good bit, but made it in under 5 hours and wasn’t rushed. Tracked it to be 12.2 but I also skipped some of the useless curving around at the beach. One of the most beautiful hikes I’ve ever done. So lush and green! It was a rather quiet trail, saw maybe a dozen people but most of them were at the beach and fern canyon area. I’d do it again. Beautiful! Would be a perfect trail running route.

loved the beach access. Didnt see a soul.

Hiked these trails in September 2015 and it is still one of my all time favorite hikes! So much to see: redwoods, fern canyon, the beach, and wildlife. We took James Irvine out from the visitor center to fern canyon. Such a beautiful and peaceful walk through the woods and fern canyon is a great place to explore. When we emerged from fern canyon through the woods and out toward the beach, we actually ran into a large bull elk taking a rest right next to the trail (we almost didn’t see him, be careful!), so we bypassed the beach trail and walked along the road to get to Miners Ridge. We were out most of the day, from around 10 AM to just about sun set, with lots of stops for photos and to enjoy the beauty around us. Highly recommend, well worth it! I would rate it moderate, rather than hard.

This is one of the best trails in the park. We did not have time to go all the way to the beach and back so we looped around. Be aware that the posted distances are much less than the actual distance covered. Our rule of thumb is to add at least a quarter mile distance to each mile hiked.

Ended up doing James Irvine to miners trail which was about 8 miles. Easy going trip with a small bit of climbing. Absolutely beautiful

The first couple miles of the hike to the overlook of the coast was an easy, but beautiful hike. Beautiful with extremely lush, and green forest and ferns. A tad muddy.

Hiked a portion of this trail on our last day in the Redwoods. Due to time constraints we were unable to complete the full trail. Whether you do a portion or the whole trail, the forest is mesmerizing! Wonderful adventure.

Absolute favorite hike in Humboldt so far.

You hike through untouched forests. It is remarkable. Go and visit this beautiful place Mother Earth created

It was one of the best views I've ever woken up to and falling asleep with the waves is great.

Incredible trail that I did last winter except that I walked down the road and back up Miners Ridge which effectively made it a figure eight because I did Clintonia coming and going. The site wouldn't post that one so I'll do it here. One of the most enjoyable hikes I've ever done especially since I did it in the middle of winter. I only saw one young couple in over 15 miles.

Lovely long walk through redwoods to the beach and back. We saw otters at the very start and a couple of banana slugs throughout. Fern Canyon is absolutely gorgeous; keep walking until you hit the two (small) waterfalls before turning back to leave. Only disappointment was that I was hoping to exit the forest right onto the beach. Instead you have to walk out of the trail into the parking lot and then onto the beach. The latrine at the beach parking lot was one of the worst latrines I've ever been in. Also, there was a LOT of human waste along the trails. People, if you go to the bathroom I the woods, take you toilet paper with you! With that, don't do it inside the redwoods! People want to explore those and have a good time. They don't want to see or smell your poop when they walk into it.

Despite the heavy smoke from wildfires, this hike was absolutely amazing. It's hard to describe the feeling of walking amongst the giant redwoods with nothing but the sound of your footsteps. Ran into less than a dozen folks on the actual trails but it was little crowded near fern canyon. Highly recommended and I can't wait to explore the other trails here.

One of the best redwood hikes there is! You can camp halfway on the beach with a permit. I would not say the trail is hard, don't let that deter you from going on this beautiful hike.

10 months ago

Was looking for a decent hike, this one didn't disappoint. Some slight inclines but by the time you get "tired", the inclines stop. This was about a 4-6 hr hike where we dallied at the beach and Fern Canyon before hiking back.

This is my all time favorite hike -each section offering amazing experiences. I love gold bluffs beach! And miners ridge kicks my butt every time. I take the loop counter clockwise.

This is a very beautiful trail that loops past fern canyon. I definitely recommend going in the direction of Miners Ridge first to get most of the elevation over with. Accomplishing this took about 5 hours for us .. so make sure you bring water and snacks!

10 months ago

Really a 3 1/2 star hike for me. The 1st 2.5 miles to the overlook and back would be a very easy hike and the next loop of 3 miles on the coastal trail are a little more difficult. While it a pretty hike with the forest and ferns it's a one and done for me. The hike is 8 miles and the gain is less than 1200'. It's signed for 10.2m but I only did the 8 to the beach and back. It's a decent hike that I'd recommend but there are much better hikes in the area.

Awesome trail but even better for me as this was my last hike to complete every trail in Prairie Creek... Definitely a hike I'll do again as part of a longer hike. The lower part is mostly redwoods and the upper is a mixture of different types of forest and then the coastal trail hugs the edge of the woods along a marshy area that the elk love. What makes this hike really great is the diversity of different types of forest. Got within 6 feet of the elk because they felt my lab who is a service dog was a predator and they were aggressively trying to take her out. They charged us repeatedly..... Fortunately I had taken a solid bamboo rod with me likes like iron and a friend and by waving our arms and chasing them off with the rod we kept them off and escaped. They usually pose no real threat to people and after we got away and looked back from a safer distance we saw 3 calves laying in the grass behind the herd. The moms were just trying to protect the babies. And of course this hike includes the famous Fern Canyon.....

So much to see! Saw elk, a waterfall, big redwoods flowers, the beach, and of course Fern canyon! Really fun hike. Go through Fern canyon first and when you a little tired at the end you walking the open field.

Best hike in the Redwoods

Hiked up Janes Irvin and went south along the coastal trail to Gold Bluffs Beach where we camped for the night (if you get to the visitor's center in Orick early in the AM, you can get a permit to camp at Gold Bluffs in the designated hike/bike site off the main developed section).

The James Irvin section was beautiful! Plenty of things to stop and check out along the way. The James Irvin trail ends in Fern Canyon. Before connecting with the coastal trail that runs North and South. We headed north to check out the trail, but found it to be too overgrown and muddy to enjoy. We also heard the south bound section was nothing but mud, so we road walked to our campsite.

The next morning, after an evening of walking up and down the beach, we set off along Miners' Ridge trail. The first mile was also very overgrown but opened up once we got deeper into the redwoods.

Overall, this was a great trip and I would highly recommend it to anyone! You could easily know out the whole loop in a day with some dedication and good footwear, but camping on the beach was one of the high points for me.

I hiked this trail w/ my brother and two kids. We started at the park headquarters & headed towards the ocean. The first 3rd of the trail is a significant climb in elevation but the remainder of the trail is a gradual down hill. My 12 and 14 year old easily hiked the trail. It took about 2 hours from the ranger station to the camp grounds on the beach. Excellent scenery. The trail is a single track but easy to carry on a conversation w the person in front or behind. The trail ends on Davison Road where we had my mother pick us up.

Man those trees are big!

Whole trail is in a forest so it's cool and bring a jacket. Right before reaching the beach, there is a fern canyon loop also worth a walk. Beach was gloomy that day and there was a big pond blocked the access. Eat a big breakfast and enjoy the hiking!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Didn't make it all the way to the beach our first time through. Great day hike to get to the overlook and lunch though. We went in early May and it was quite wet in a few spots but nothing we couldn't slog through. There's also a lot of roots in the trail so you've got to watch your step and pause when you want to look up at the beautiful trees. Great scenery all along the trail and a nice view down to the beach at the part before the trail to the beach. I think the mileage might be a bit off though, and longer than the signage claims. Hopeful to make it back soon and plan for an hour to rest at the beach before heading back. Or having a pick-up planned at Gold Bluff Beach!

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