The Trinidad Coastal Land Trust owns, for public benefit, some of the most beautiful coastal properties and beach access trails on the northern California coast. The following is a short description of the 11 properties we own fee title and the additional fourteen public benefit conservation easements we hold on nearby private properties. In total,25 properties located from Little River to Big Lagoon are protected as of 2018, and three additional, significant public trail projects are in the works.
Starting at the south end of Trinidad Bay, our newest acquisition is the 15-acre Little River Trail parcel. The future Little River Trail trailhead is located at the south end of Scenic Drive, near Highway 101 above Moonstone Beach. This parcel was purchased in 2015 with the goal to connect the Trinidad coast to the Hammond Trail at Clam Beach via a new trail and bicyclist bridge across the Little River. Excitingly, this will be a brand new and much-needed section of the CA Coastal Trail.
Just down the hill at Moonstone Beach, the land trust holds a public access conservation easement over a portion of the privately-owned Moonstone Beach parking lot. The Merryman family, owners of the beach house, restaurant, and the rest of the parking lot, work with the land trust to support the public use of the beach and maintenance of the parking lot.
Further north along Scenic Drive, the land trust owns the Pilot Point nature reserve. Pilot Point is the large landmass jutting out at the north end of Moonstone Beach. This property is a geologic/ecological reserve and is only open to public access during sponsored hikes.
Just north along the coast, another popular public beach is at Houda Point (a.k.a. Camel Rock). This eight acre beach park with three official trails is owned by TCLT and maintained by volunteers, with frequent help from local surfers. Aside from being one of the most scenic vistas and best surf spots in Humboldt County, Camel Rock is home to breeding colonies of seabirds like the Leach's Storm Petrel. Moving north, in 1979 the land trust received its first gift of property at north Luffenholtz Beach from the Georgia Pacific Lumber Company. This property adjoins and is accessed from the Luffenholtz Beach Park. This is a fantastic family and fishing beach owned by our State of California. The land trust is working with the State to manage the beach park and restore public restrooms.
Continuing up the coast, the land trust owns the scenic Baker Beach property and holds conservation easements protecting forest and open space on the adjacent Baker Ranch residential subdivision (not public access). Visit Baker Beach at low-tide for amazing tide pool viewing.
Further along Scenic Drive closer to the town of Trinidad, you pass through an enchanting redwood forest grove. The two-acre Bruno Groth Redwood Grove was donated by Herman and Ann Iverson in honor of local resident and famous sculptor Bruno Groth. We envision building a redwood forest trail connecting to nearby Old Home Beach. Old Home Beach (a.k.a. Indian Beach) is the larger beach cove just below the Memorial Lighthouse and south of Trinidad. The land trust holds both ownership of a forest parcel and a public access conservation easement along the city's Parker Creek trail to this beach. TCLT also holds a public access easement to the Parker Creek Trail from Wagner Street.
Just north of Trinidad along Stagecoach Road, the Martin Creek Trail is a rugged beach access trail on private property. This trail is undeveloped with dangerous beach access in wet or stormy weather, and requires the cooperation of the public in maintaining both its privacy and dry weather access.
TCLT also holds several 'lateral beach easements' along the greater Trinidad coast on private parcels with shoreline frontage. These easements were required by the CA Coastal Commission in order for landowners to receive building or subdivision permits. These easements just include areas of the seashore from the mean high tide line upslope about 40 feet to the land bluff.
In 2018, Trinidad's own Saunders family donated the locally famous 'horse pasture' property, a gift of undeveloped pasture land to the Land Trust. We plan to develop a conservation public benefit land use plan in the near future.
The land trust also owns two developed properties within city limits. The Saunders Park property is a cultural center near the entrance of town, home to the Trinidad Museum, Trinidad Library, a public park, native plant garden, and the Simmons Gallery (home to our land trust office). We are located at 380 Janis Court. In 2011 the Land Trust was gifted (via a willed gift) the Trinidad Art Gallery building at 490 Trinity Street. This historic building, constructed in 1900, was gifted to the Land Trust in the will of the late Ned Lee Simmons. The Trinidad Art Gallery is a private retail business cooperative of local artists, www.trinidadartgallery.com.
You can see photos, maps and read more about each of our public access properties on the additional links on our website, under 'Protected Properties'.
As part of the Land Trust's mission to preserve the natural beauty and biodiversity of our property holdings, we often hold work days to remove invasive plants (English ivy, Scotch broom, jubata and pampas grass). To support our efforts please consider a donation to our Protection in Perpetuity Land Stewardship Fund (click here), a restricted savings account for conservation land management.