The story of Punta Gorda Lighthouse is a haunting one—workers were sent to the isolated site as punishment for bad behavior. The lighthouse, located on the Long Coast in King Range National Conservation Area, first cast its bright beams in 1912 after a shipwreck 16 miles south of Punta Gorda destroyed 87 lives.

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Expert Review of Punta Gorda Lighthouse

Parks and Outdoors Review of Punta Gorda Lighthouse

Away Travel Expert: Ann Marie Brown
ParksExpert Rating 4.0 out of 5 Recommended for:
Birding,Day Hiking,Saltwater Fishing,Whale Watching
Parks and OutdoorsExpert Tips & Helpful Hints
  • The only way to visit Punta Gorda Lighthouse, or what is left of it, is to walk three miles on the Lost Coast Trail heading south from Mattole Campground. The lighthouse began operation in 1911 and was in use until 1951. The BLM demolished most of the lighthouse buildings in 1970, but hikers today can still see a few remains, including the lighthouse turret and the oil house.
  • The lighthouse is the destination on this trail, but the big rewards come from the journey itself, which is a hike along the pea-gravel sands of Black Sand Beach. Seals, sea lions, and even whales may accompany you.
  • A section of the trail to the lighthouse can be impassible at high tide. Also, during the winter months, be prepared to wade across Fourmile Creek.

King Range National Conservation Area
Price: No fee

Visitor Information

Telephone Number: 707-825-2300
Price Information: No fee
The details, dates, and prices mentioned here were accurate at the time of publication.

Review by Away Copyright © 2010 all rights reserved.