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Mendocino National Forest



Covelo Ranger District- Covelo Ranger District offers a wide variety of recreational activities to participate in. In the District are miles of hiking trails, horseback riding trails and campgrounds. This District provides and excellent access point for the Yolla Bolly Wilderness.
Eel River- California's Eel River flows through canyons most of its length, but ends in a gently sloping valley with virgin redwood stands. Its salmon and steelhead fishery is of commercial importance to the local area.
Grindstone Ranger District- The Grindstone Ranger District is the conglomeration of the former Stonyford Ranger District and Corning Ranger District. This District encompasses most of the eastern half of the Mendocino National Forest. The Grindstone Ranger District offers many opportunities for hiking, biking, fishing, camping and horseback riding.
Upper Lake Ranger District- Upper Lake Ranger District is located in the southeastern region of the Mendocino Forest. There are 9 developed campground, 1 group site, 2 designated picnic areas, and 5 promoted hiking trails. There are several undeveloped campgrounds and other activities to enjoy.
Yolla Bolly-Middle Eel Wilderness- The Yolla Bolly-Middle Eel Wilderness provides the experience of deep mountain forests and swift rivers. Located approximately 20 miles northeast of Covelo, the changing elevations in this wilderness offers a variety of outdoor conditions.

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General Information

Description - The Forest is approximately 65 miles long and 35 miles across, consisting of one million acres of mountains and canyons which offer a variety of recreational opportunities. Elevations in the Forest range from 750 feet, in the Grindstone Creek Canyon in the Sacramento Valley foothills on the Forest's eastern edge, to 8,092 feet, height of the South Yolla Bolly Mountain in the northern part of the Forest. The average elevation is about 4,000 feet.

Attractions - The only one of California's 18 national forests not crossed by a paved road or highway, the Mendocino National Forest is especially attractive to people seeking an outdoor experience of tranquillity and solitude.

Two wilderness areas are located on the Mendocino National Forest. Yolla Bolly-Middle Eel Wilderness sits at the northern end of the Forest and Snow Mountain Wilderness is located at the southern end.

The Lake Red Bluff Recreation Area, located along the Sacramento River, is administered by the Mendocino. It offers camping, fishing and boating.

Recreation - The diverse geography of the Mendocino offers numerous recreational opportunities including camping, hiking, backpacking, boating, fishing, hunting, nature study, photography, and off-highway vehicle travel.

Camping opportunities on the Forest range from developed campgrounds with some facilities, to dispersed campsites to backcountry camping.

The Mendocino National Forest supports an extensive resident trout fishery as well as salmon and warm-water fisheries. Rainbow trout are found in over 300 miles of streams and 2,000 acres of lakes and ponds.

The varied terrain of the Mendocino offers endless opportunities for mountain bikers. Wilderness areas are one of the few places on the Forest where bicycles are not permitted.

The Mendocino National Forest offers one of the finest opportunities for OHV recreationists in Northern California. Designated routes and facilities exist for the enjoyment of the OHV recreationist. Basic OHV rules and regulations are posted at most staging areas and campgrounds where OHV use is allowed. Free OHV maps are available covering the Grindstone and Upper Lake Districts.

Climate - The climate on the Mendocino is greatly influenced by elevation. As throughout California, most of the precipitation comes between November and April. This comes in the form of rain at the lower elevations and some wet, heavy snow in the higher elevations. April through October are normally dry, with warm to hot temperatures at the low elevations and moderate temperatures in the higher elevations.

Location - The Mendocino National Forest straddles the eastern spur of the Coastal Mountain Range in northwestern California, just a three hour drive north of San Francisco and Sacramento. The Forest lies roughly between the towns of Willows, Covelo and Upper Lake, with Forest Service offices in each of those towns.


Current Conditions & Trip Reports

Trip Reports:
Add your own trip Report! Newly re-released feature. One of the most popular features on Wildernet, trip reports allow you to share your experiences with others. This is an invaluable resource for determining what to expect on your outdoor adventure, so please participate! To prevent spamming, you must be a registered user of Wildernet in order to submit a trip report

Filed By: kim wallace (loomis, ca)
Number of People Encountered: 11-25 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: racoons growl and sound like big bears and they are not afraid of campfires! Watch out for these critters hanging in the trees- they're climbers! They wait until you're alone at night to raid your potatoe chips, then stomp down slops like big foot on a rage.

Filed By: Kim Witcher (Lake County, CA)
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: The MNF is my favorite national forest in CA. I ride my dirtbike on the single track trails here every weekend and I have been riding in this forest for 10 years. National Forests are for multiple use and dirtbike riding is one of the opportunities that exists in MNF. I realize that other uses exist in MNF and would like to remind other user groups that dirtbike riders like to enjoy the outdoors too, so please be kind to us so we can all get along and have a nice experience on the trails/roads in MNF. Thanks


More Information

Contact Information:
Mendocino National Forest, 825 N. Humboldt Avenue , Willows, CA, 95988, Phone: 916-934-3316, TTY: 530-934-7724

Additional Information:
California National Forests & Parks - California's National Parks, Monuments and Forests cover lands from the Pacific Ocean to the crest of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
Central Valley Region - California's breadbasket, the great Central Valley, stretches for 450 miles down the center of the state, from Willows to Bakersfield. This region includes culturally diverse communities, historic sites, exceptional outdoor recreation, abundant wildlife and the California Delta.
North Coast Region - The North Coast Region, stretches over 400 miles of rugged coastline from San Francisco to the redwood forests near the Oregon border. Inland are some of California's best vineyards and quaint villages.
Northern California -
Shasta Cascade Region - The Shasta Cascade Region of northeast California is a land of dense conifer forests, volcanic landscapes, and few people. It features five national forests, five state parks, four state historic parks, and two state recreation areas.

Links:
Mendocino National Forest - Official agency website.
Mendocino National Forest - Official agency website.

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