Hike King's Peak

Lightning Trailhead

Distance

2.5 Miles

Elevation Gain

2500 Feet

Activities

Survival, Chillin, Camping, Backpacking, Hiking

Skill

Beginner

Season

Winter

Type

Out-and-Back

Added by

Josiah Roe

Adult Beverages
Forest
Romantic
Scenic
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Solitude and epic views overlooking the King Range and the Lost Coast.

King's Peak is the tallest peak in the King Range, the home of the famous and spectacular "Lost Coast". At an elevation of 4,000' and less than 3 miles from the ocean, King's Peak provides stunning views in all directions: of canyons, beaches, foggy valleys, and the many greenhouses that dot the Humboldt County backcountry.

King's Peak is perhaps the only coastal peak that can be compared to Big Sur's Cone Peak, having almost the same awe-inspiring vistas but with none of the traffic or the abandoned fire lookout. Even on a summer weekend you have a reasonable chance of having the trail and summit to yourself.

Take a beer or two preferably from a northern Californian brewery.

There are several routes to the summit of King's Peak, the shortest being the 2.5 mile long Lightning Trail from the Lightning Trailhead, which can be reached by heading towards Shelter Cove from Gaberville and the 101, and then taking a right on the dirt/gravel King's Peak Road and the left on King Range Road which dead-ends at the trailhead. The trail ascends the King Range Crest from the east side passing Maple Camp on it's way to the summit. This route has about 2000' of elevation gain.

Most though will attempt the climb from the Lost Coast Trail via either the Rattlesnake Ridge Trail from Big Flat or the Buck Creek Trail. These are much longer routes of 8+ miles with 4,000' of elevation gain,with all the high-tide concerns that come with hiking the Lost Coast trail.

NOTE: The King Range is remote, with no services other than those found in Shelter Cove, an hour+ drive away and yes, Humboldt County is very green, and the locals do not take kindly to strangers wandering down their driveways, gated-dirt-roads, or into their agricultural areas.

blm.gov/KingRangeGreyMap

Community Photos

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations.

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

Zevilla Dahliana

almost 2 years ago

Camping Links

Hello, thank you for sharing! I'm excited to check this one out. The links you referenced in the camping sections on the bottom of the blog aren't working though. Definitely interested in camping there if possible.

Distance

2.5 Miles

Elevation Gain

2500 Feet

Activities

Survival, Chillin, Camping, Backpacking, Hiking

Skill

Beginner

Season

Winter

Type

Out-and-Back

Added by

Josiah Roe

Nearby Adventures

Adventure

Backpack to King's Peak from Shelter Cove

Adventure

Camp at Black Sands Beach on the Lost Coast

Adventure

Hike the Chinquapin Loop on The Lost Coast

Adventure

Hike the Johnson Camp Trail

More Nearby Adventures

Related Stories

destinations

20 Stunning Hikes in the Swiss Alps

Mountains don't get much better than this.

destinations

A Magical Yosemite Valley Winter Storm

A Yosemite Winter Wonderland

gear

La Sportiva Women's Skwama Climbing Shoe Review

Super sticky, super responsive, and just as badass as the men’s version of the shoe.

travel

A Few Days in Rossland, BC - A Must-Stop on the Powder Highway

If this town of less than 4,000 friendly folks doesn’t charm your socks off, the terrain at RED M...

More Stories