Explore the most popular walking trails in Russian Gulch 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.

hiking
4 days ago

Gorgeous trail and loved the changes in terrain. We followed Nicole Zanni’s advice and took the North Trail, to the North Boundary, to the East Trail, to Fern Canyon. We were moving pretty quick and it took 2.5 hours.

hiking
15 days ago

Beautiful trail. A little elevation at the beginning but you reach the top pretty quickly. I recommend starting out on the North Trail then connect to the North Boundary Trail. You get to see a really crazy looking Pygmy forest. Jump off at the East Trail then connect to Fern Canyon which takes you to the top of the waterfalls. Beautiful! If you finish the hike continuing on Fern Canyon it’ll be a 6.75 mile hike. Really pretty with lots of different vegetation in a short amount of time.

hiking
21 days ago

One of the best trails! #Redwoods

Beautiful, all the fern so green and healthy, the waterfall is breathtaking.

hiking
1 month ago

Not sure but recording on this trail was not running accurate. Entrance to trail appears to be where asphalt ends. Because it rained night before trail was spongey and slippery in spots. Hiking pole(s) would have helped today. Trail is wide and a downhill most of the was to the falls. After falls we returned the way we came. The falls after the rain was roaring and well worth the trip. The stairs down to the falls can be tricky so watch the kids, dogs and yourself

I completed this trail on a Wednesday at the end of March. There were some areas where the trail was muddy, but nothing you couldn’t walk around (or through!) There were some areas with limited coverage but for the most part the trail is covered by beautiful redwoods! It was a little muggy so definitely bring bug spray to fend off mosquitos. I have not done a hike in a while, so halfway through the waterfall loop portion, I was huffing and puffing a bit, but once you make it to the waterfall, it’s smooth sailing back to the campground. There’s plenty of opportunities for breaks to take photos of the wildlife and landscape! It’s absolutely gorgeous!

Relatively easy trail. Was fairly muddy after some rain, but manageable. The waterfall was in full force and a nice touch to the loop. It's interesting getting a number of different forest ecosystems. The beginning is more oaks, then more redwoods when in the canyon, and pines when on the hill.

Blufftop area that has a number of trails so you can explore a bit of the area. Other than the beautiful coastline, the sinkhole is definitely worth the stop. It's connected to the ocean and the resulting effects to the sinkhole are very mesmerising.

on Waterfall Loop Trail

2 months ago

For seventy years, this was a nice trail on a beautiful day in February. Easy.

really pretty waterfall at the half way point in the fern canyon trail. such a nice pit stop

so beautiful! lots of mushrooms, ferns, and redwoods

hiking
3 months ago

Enjoyable hike with enough elevation change to add a little challenge, especially since the recent rains have bogged it a bit. Waterfall running strong.

hiking
4 months ago

All in all, this was a delightful and relatively flat stroll. To correct an earlier poster, the trail to the waterfall is still *open*, although the campgrounds at Russian Gulch have closed for the season. Some of the bathrooms have also closed, but there is at least one with a flush toilet that is still open. The forest was incredibly green and lush, and the waterfall itself is delicate and beautiful now because there hasn't been much rain this season. Be careful on the wooden bridges and if you are playing around near the waterfall - the wetness in the forest can make the ground very slick!

hiking
4 months ago

The trail was closed for the season until spring. Also dogs are not permitted on the trail. They are allowed on the Headlane Trails that go along the cliffs and they are allowed on the jetty beach. $8 for a day pass parking. The Headlane Trails are beautiful and decently easy to hike. Just beware of ticks. I got one and my dog got three. Happy Trails!

This is such a pleasant hike. Super green fern heaven and ends in a beautiful waterfall. You can also just go to the waterfall and turn back. The trails are super well maintained. Decent hike all around from a workout. Not too strenuous. Kids loved it as well.

hiking
4 months ago

The trail was very well-maintained for this time of season. There were a couple of washed out sections but nothing bad. Good traction throughout entire trail, with a few minor mud bogs. The highlight was the beautiful beautiful scenery. We will make a point to do this hike every time we are in the area.

Good short hike through the redwoods and to the waterfall. Hiking in the rain was a unique experience and the waterfall do looks great after a good walk through the woods

hiking
6 months ago

A quite respectable fern canyon with a waterfall :)
If you're up for some more elevation, check out the North Trail on the way, as the route shows, but take that side-loop up along the North Boundary Trail (shown in blue), it gets into some strange bone-white pygmy forest.

Beautiful trail, well-maintained, few people. I would recommend this!!

hiking
6 months ago

Beautiful hike with gorgeous plant life, wildlife, even newts, and a Waterfall. Loved it!

hiking
7 months ago

Gorgeous hike. Trail is narrow at times and there are some old fallen trees to get around. There weren't very many people for a weekend in Oct.

hiking
7 months ago

came from out of state to see the red woods. this was definately the way to go. beautiful scenery.

hiking
8 months ago

Very nice hike. The falls are beautiful, even in September. The first part of the trail is an old logging road, so it is still somewhat paved, but the rest is dirt. Much of the route follows the creek, so it is very lush with plenty of ferns and flowers. We hiked on a weekday and saw about 20 people total, so not a busy trail. Most people seem to take the most direct out and back route to the falls. We did a loop to add additional distance and hardly saw anyone on the secondary trails. Our favorite part of the hike was along the north trail - you have some elevation gain, but it's not difficult, and then once you are up on the hill, it is a very easy and relaxing hike through the forest.

8 months ago

No bugs. Well maintained trails. Lovely forest.

hiking
9 months ago

We went the first week of June and it was beautiful. It was cool in the morning an warm by the end of the hike. We went an extended route which ended up being around 8 miles. Trailheads were well marked and parking was easy. Since it's also a campground there are water fountains and bathrooms near the parking. We saw maybe 5 or 6 different groups of hikers for the firsts half to the waterfall but once we split off into the extended trail we didn't see anyone. Majority of the first 3/4 of the trail were shaded and the last fourth was intermittent shade, but it doesn't get too hot in Mendocino so it was fine - I'd just suggest to bring a bit of sunscreen. Also - use bug repellent! There were a whole-lotta mosquitos buzzing around. Also - I had it a bit easier than my SO with my waterproof hiking boots. There were a good amount of puddles and mud he had to dodge.

9 months ago

Beautiful waterfalls but path is full of stinging nettles. Spent more time trying to avoid being stung than enjoying the trail.

10 months ago

pretty fun trail with gorgeous forest views and an awesome waterfall midway through. shorter options available

hiking
10 months ago

Walked this trail today. Did the 2.7 one way. It was beautiful and we took kids age 4-9 with us and they did great. I did find out while there that dogs ARE NOT ALLOWED.

hiking
11 months ago

Amazing trail! Beautiful and almost completely shaded. I went on a day that was over 100 degrees inland, and it was an amazing 60 degrees on the trail. I was alone the majority of the trail
And just saw a couple people right at the end. A little muddy in areas, but not terrible. Loved the waterfall and even benches at the waterfall to take a break.

hiking
11 months ago

This is a really peaceful loop through the forest, and has a beautiful waterfall + pool to wallow in near the half-way point.

Load More