Hike King's Peak

2.5 miles 2500 ft gain  - Out-and-Back Trail

Added by Josiah Roe

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

Read More

Tags

Survival
Chillin
Camping
Backpacking
Hiking
Adult Beverages
Forest
Romantic
Scenic
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

over 3 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.

Stay Nearby

Humboldt County, California

Benbow Koa

Garberville, California

Campsite 2 B

The Lower Pond is a special quiet spot, with a mix of forest & meadows surrounding it. Many campsites are possible. Great place to hang a hammock. Gorgeous hiking and horseback riding all ar...

From $50/night

1S51

Fir Cove Campground

Overview Fir Cove Campground is located on beautiful Ruth Lake, a 13,800-acre jewel situated in the thickly forested mountains of northern California. A variety of recreational opportunities aboun...

Lower Mad River Road

Mad River Campground

Overview Mad River Campground is located on banks of its namesake river, about two miles south of Ruth Lake in the thickly forested mountains of northern California.Recreation Fishing is a popular ...

Nearby Adventures

  • Backpack to King's Peak from Shelter Cove

    After parking at Shelter Cove and securing a camping permit ($3 per night in the backcountry) follow the bear prints down the coastline for 5 miles, keeping in mind that the tide devours the beach every 12 hours. Parts of the beach become impassab...

    25 miles 5800 ft gain

  • Camp at Black Sands Beach on the Lost Coast

    Black Sands Beach and all of the Lost Coast is almost indescribable in its ruggedness and beauty. Black Sands Beach sits along the southern portion of of the famous Lost Coast Trail, and is accessible by one of the two roads that go across the Kin...

    0.5 miles

  • Hike the Chinquapin Loop on The Lost Coast

    I did this hike the day before setting out on a backpacking trip along the northern section of The Lost Coast Trail and it was a fantastic warm up hike. The Chinquapin Loop is a loop off of The Lost Coast Trail along Chemise Mountain, near the sta...

    6 miles 600 ft gain

  • Hike the Johnson Camp Trail

    This trail is shared by hikers, trail runners, backpackers and horseback riders. The trail is best used from March through November, as the bridges that allow river crossings are seasonal. You can call Humboldt Redwoods State parks (707-946-1811) ...

    9.5 miles 2103 ft gain