Sonoma Section 2
Sea Ranch Lodge to Salt Point State Park North Boundary
For all the public coastal land in Sonoma County, this piece of coast represents, along with southern Sea Ranch, a real barrier to the public entitlement of access to the state tidelands. The huge Richardson Ranch spans almost the entire length of this walk, so watch for numerous "NO TRESPASSING" signs. The rugged indented low bluffs, the marine terrace, and rich intertidal zone are off limits. The dramatic views from the road shoulder only hint at a better hike.
Follow the highway shoulder across the gently sloping marine terrace, leaving Sea Ranch before one mile to walk through scenic rural land. The highway skirts the forested hills rising to the east, staying roughly ¼ mile in from the shore until around 2 miles where the land form of Stewarts Point slopes westward ½ mile.
Descend to the settlement called Stewarts Point at 2½ miles. Founded in 1857, it was a major doghole lumber port. This area, a designated historical district, presents an excellent example of a 19th-century coastal settlement. The Richardson family still operates their fine general store in an 1868 building. Continue south on the highway, watching for the old one-room schoolhouse west of the road. After you dip across Stewarts Creek, good views of points and coves open up, first of Fisherman Bay, then Sandy Point around 3 miles. The road rolls through hilly terrain around 4 miles where Rocky Point juts west. Continue to the walks end at 6½ miles where a large turnout is on the west side of the road with a grove of Bishop pines just over the fence. A sign for Salt Point State Park is up the road several hundred feet.
Distance: 6 ½ miles (10.5 kilometers)
Open to: Hikers, Bicylists
Surface: Highway shoulder
Access point: Sea Ranch Lodge
How to get there: Turn west off Highway 1 10 miles south of the Gualala River and 30 miles north of Jenner into Sea Ranch Lodge parking lot.
Other access: Anywhere along highway 1.
Elevation gain/loss: 240 feet+/240 feet
Cautions: Private property lines both sides of the road for the entire section.
Further information: None.
Facilities: Restaurant and small store at Sea Ranch, store at Stewarts Point.
Campgrounds: Gualala Point Regional Park to the north and Salt Point State Park to the south have camping.
Lodging: Sea Ranch Lodge
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