Photo by Jim Popenoe
Elevation: 358 feet
There are views in all directions from a series of vantage points along the foot trail around Trinidad Head. The trail branches right from the paved road to the Trinidad Head Light. We will start the trail here. There are information signs and viewing benches at the trailhead. From here we look northward down onto Trinidad Beach and the town of Trinidad.
The trail takes us through dense shrubby vegetation up a gentle grade. Looking north from the next overlook, we find an excellent view of the peninsula of Elk Head. The trail grows steeper as we continue on, and takes two switchbacks as it approaches the west side of the head. Looking up just past the next overlook, we see a rocky summit to the west not far away. Reaching there is a highlight of any Trinidad Head hike.
Branch right on the spur trail to reach the summit. Keep your eyes peeled for poison oak. At the west-end view point, we are treated to a sweeping panorama of Trinidad's rugged coast and large offshore rocks. To the west, sea lions bark and bask on low rocks. To the south, we may even see the coastal mountains south of Eureka.
Returning to the main trail and continuing, we turn southeastward, meandering down, then switchbacking back up onto another rise past some Douglas-fir to a grassy knoll. I often find poison oak along this stretch of trail as well.
There are benches and a cross on the knoll. The cross bears a date of 1775 and is a historic landmark. Downhill south of the cross is a viewing platform that offers a glimpse of the Trinidad Head Light.
From the cross, we have only to walk down the hill along roads on the east side of the head. Be alert for vehicles and yield to them. From this side of Trinidad Head are some beautiful views of the coast south of Trinidad.
My Trinidad Head map depicts the trail and has additional photos taken from Trinidad Head.