A weekend full of fun and relaxation on the beautifyl north Coast. Be sure to bring your kayak, fishing gear, hiking boots & picnic basket. If you like....bring your RV!

By Debbie Reynolds, Fortuna River Lodge

Friday-Leave Redbluff CA (eat a big breakfast and bring a road snack) Start out going west on CA-36 toward Fortuna.  It begins at valley level and climbs through some of the most beautiful mountains (not that you’ll have time to see them), it is 4 hours of road, and it ends at the Pacific Ocean, but not today.  Two parks you’ll want to stop at:  Cheatham Grove is an exceptional stand of coast redwoods.  The park is a quiet place to camp, hike fish, swim and picnic.  The Van Duzen River flows beside the campground.  Grizzly Creek Redwoods State Park covers only a few acres, it is large enough to provide a sense of seclusion, and it receives so few visitors that on a weekday it is possible to be the only person in one of its groves of coast redwoods.  On the Road Again:  Drive West until you reach Highway 101 and go North.  Take exit 687 and turn left on Riverwalk.  Hotels or RV Park, you’ll be happy with your decision.  Check in, relax for a bit and walk to the Eel River Brewing Co which produces award-winning organic beer using renewable energy.  Their menu at Taproom and Grill offers both local and organic products.  Not just a brew pub with a little something to eat, Eel River Brewing Company’s Taproom Eel River Brew­ing Company’s Taproom & Grill has become one of Humboldt County’s top dining destinations.    Saturday- Begin your day with a Continental Breakfast included at all the hotels. Then take a stroll down the Riverwalk levy that overlooks the Eel River. The views are endless. When you finish, stop into the River Lodge Conference Center and Gift shop and enjoy the lobby filled with local art and the gift shop featuring local artisans’ wares. Check out the Heather gardens too.   Options for the adventurous hiker may include:  A hike in the Headwaters Forrest;  The Headwaters Forest Reserve is one of the few remaining refuges for an endangered seabird.  Marbled Murrelets make their nests on large redwood tree branches be­tween March 25 and September 15. The seabird nesting can be disastrously disrupted by human activity! It is the only forest reserve in the United States and is managed as a nature reserve of the BLM's National Landscape Conservation System.  For a leisurely hike head off to Rhoner Park right in Fortuna and take the Rhoner hiking trails to see second growth redwoods of all sizes.  Next stop, Fortuna Depot Museum, an 1893 railroad stop is a wonderful Glimpse of Eel River Valley history. Located off Main at 3 Park Street.Then lunch or an early dinner at Shamus T Bones.  This place is what Eureka has needed. A unique family style atmosphere that is always buzzing with customers.  A suggestion for lunch would be to visit the “Loleta Cheese Factory” in Loleta just up the road 10 minutes.  It’s nestled in the Eel River Valley of Northern California in the dairy center of Hum­boldt County.  It’s a family-run business, dedicated to making the finest premium natural and organic cheeses.  Loleta Cheese Factory is a Real California cheese maker producing over 34 varieties of cheese, including Natural Cheddar cheese (both medium and sharp cheddar), Havarti cheese, Fontina cheese, Monterey Jack cheese, flavored Jack cheese, Colby Jack cheese (also known as Co-Jack) and many others, plus their specialty cheeses.  Sample to your heart’s content and then purchase your very own for your next picnic. Enjoy the Cheese making process through the large windows and visit their beautiful gardens and see how well you can do at Cheese Trivia (see below).    Choose Your Sunday
 Whether you choose to take a walk, hike, fish, kayak or partake in one of our Major Events or Festivals  you will be sure to have a great time.

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