Local Trail Descriptions and Trailhead Access Directions
Click for printable PDF trail maps:
Choose a trail below for directions to trail access locations.
Ukiah Valley Trails:
Lake Mendocino Trails:
If you have any questions or need more specific directions, we'd be glad to help. Give us a call at
Ukiah Valley Trails
A steep 4 mile trail that starts at upper Mill Creek
pond. It winds through chaparral and oak forest. It comes
Take Talmage Rd east to the intersection with Old River Rd at The City of Ten Thousand Buddhas. Turn right. Turn left at Mill Creek Rd. There will be a sign directing you to Cow Mountain. Proceed up Mill Creek Rd as it starts uphill. Pass the lower dam and pond and then the upper dam and dry pond. Park at the far end of the upper pond. The trailhead for Valley View is right across the street. There is a sign at the beginning of the trail.
Scorpion Trail or Ridge Trail
County park trail less than 3 miles long. Narrow, mostly shady trail. Great views of the valley from the ridge. Tends to have a lot of poison oak. Follow directions for Valley View. Walk up the road a little farther to Mill Creek Park. Go through the park and head south along the creek. Look for a few steps heading up the hill or proceed south along the upper pond. This trail will loop around but is not well marked up on the ridge.
Here's how to get to the new Low Gap Trail: starting at the parking lot across from the high school, take the paved road down hill and cross the big wide bridge. On the other side of the bridge you will follow the paved road that heads up hill. You'll pass a ball field on your left and then see a road that goes to the left. Take the road to the left
In about 150 yards the paved road ends and connects with a dirt road. Take the dirt road to the right and head up hill. You will see a large, very well manicured yard on your left as you head up the hill. Continue past the disc golf tee and head up the hill as it slants to the left. In about 25 yards you will see a small trail that takes off to the left, that is marked with a "No Bikes" sign. Take this trail and immediately cross a little bridge and follow the trail as it proceeds up hill.
You will pass a vernal pool on the right of the trail. Observe the vernal pool, but stay out of it as it is a very fragile and special environment. You will reach an intersection. The trail that proceeds to the right is "Canyon Trail" and makes about a two mile loop back to the paved road you came in on. The trail to the left is the new trail! Congratulations, you made it. The trail goes out, loops, and then returns to your present location. Walking the new trail is about a two mile loop. Combine it with "Canyon Trail" for a 4+ mile walk. Have fun, and support our future trail building efforts with your donations and volunteer hours and by encouraging your friends to do the same.
Lake Mendocino Area Trails:
3 mile trail that is mostly shady and follows the western shore of the lake. Everyone’s favorite trail although it has suffered from erosion of the lake shore and has become steeper with many reroutes.
You can get to the Northern end of this trail by parking next to the Pomo Cultural Center at the Northwest corner of the lake. There is a picnic table at the south end of the parking lot next to the trail head. The trail is signed. The Pomo Cultural Center is at the Pomo day use area just off Marina Dr. There are two Lake Mendocino exits off of Hwy 20. The eastern exit is the road that leads to Bushay campground. The more western exit of the two takes you to Marina Dr and goes through the Kyen campground on the North end of the lake.
To get to the Southern end of Shakota trail, take Lake Mendocino Dr towards Coyote dam. Look for a sign to the overlook. You will make a left turn up to the overlook. If you walk past the bathroom at the overlook, you should see the trail.
There are trails and truck roads that connect the south end of the dam with Bushay campground. We are calling the main road that traverses this area the Kaweyo Truck Road. The milage markers that are currently posted are for this road. All the trails increase the distance. The trails and roads are a hodge podge of some really nice shady contouring trail, really steep trail, damaged trail, and the spillway which is star thistle covered in summer, mucky in winter and a generally ugly but short section of trail. We are attempting to sign and map these trails. We plan to continue to improve and reroute the existing trails. We have a detailed map available of the existing trails and roads on the south end of the lake.
The new eastern section of trail can be accessed from either the end of Bushay Campground or from Deerwood Park. The newest (Fall 2006) section is most accessible from the Deerwood Trailhead. It is only open to foot traffic until dryer weather in the spring.
The road to Bushay Campground starts just east of the Hwy 20 bridge over the inlet to Lake Mendocino. When the campground is closed during the winter, you can park just outside the ranger station. When the campground is open, you can drive through and park at the mesa area (it is signed.) The trailhead is just south of the stinky bathrooms at Little Bear. Look for a T H and a white cross painted on the road. If you miss the trailhead, you can always just walk south through the campground until you get to the dirt road. The new trail joins back at the bottom of the first hill and you have to follow the road about ½ mile until you connect with trail again.
Deerwood Drive Access:
To access from Deerwood, take Perkins Street east until you hit the end where you turn left on to Redemeyer Rd. Take Redemeyer road past Eldorado Estates and look for Deerwood Drive on your right. Follow Deerwood Drive to it’s end (approx 2 miles) You will pass a large water tower on your right and then the road starts to descend. You will then see a parking area at the end of the pavement (most people park here) immediately followed by a fork in the road. On the right it’s marked “private.” You will go to the left and cross a small bridge. We are usually carrying tools and drive up the dirt road about 0.2 miles and park at the next little intersection. There is enough room for 1 or 2 cars to park there. At this intersection, the road to your left enters Corp of Engineers property. There is a sign that says “Authorized Vehicles Only.” Walk up through the gate. Follow the dirt road down the hill. The newest section of trail starts at the bottom of the first hill where the road turns right. It is less than 2 miles long and heads toward the spillway. There is marker there with a #3. There is also a sign asking people to stay off the trail. Some foot traffic is probably good for the trail. The next section of new trail is down by the lake and is difficult to see from this direction. As you approach the creek (dry in summer,) you will see it heading off to the west. If you keep following the road north, you will see the next section of trail not far from the creek crossing. From this point, you can follow new trail for over 3 - 4 miles. It does cross the road a few times and occasionally follows the road for short distances. The southern end is mostly exposed and not recommended for a hot afternoon.
South Lake Trails including the southern part of Kaweyo trail:
From the trail head at Deerwood Drive (directions just above), you can also access the trails on the south part of the lake. If you turn left at the first intersection of the dirt road past the gate, you will soon see the #4 trail heading off to the left (south.) This trail winds back to the road you are on, but is less steep. If you stay on this road, you are on Kaweyo truck road and it will take you towards the spillway of the lake.
If, at the first intersection, you head downhill towards the lake, you will see the #3 trail heading to the north, towards the lake. This leads to the #1 trail that mostly follows the southern edge of the lake and also heads towards the spillway. See description above under Deerwood Drive access for more information.
South boat ramp/Coyote Dam Trail head:
Take Lake Mendocino Dr to the end (don’t go into lake.) There is parking by the dam and by the boat ramp. Walk across the dam. Look for sign at the end of the dam pointing left (east) towards lake.
Low Gap Road:
This is worth mentioning as a place to ride mountain
bikes and or run. Like most public roads, the traffic has
Robinson Creek Road:
This road is off the Boonville-Ukiah Rd (Hwy 253.) It is a county road for almost 4 miles. It is very scenic and follows beautiful Robinson Creek. There is a group of walkers that hikes almost every Saturday morning here about 8:30 am. Contact Vic Crosetti through the Redwood Health Club for details.
"Eastside" Trail (built in 2005)
The "Eastside Trail" can be accessed from either Bushay Campground or from Deerwood Park bordering Lake Mendocino.