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    Kortum Trail

    Sonoma Coast State Park, California
    Elevation Gain731ft
    Trailhead Elevation85ft

    Kortum Trail

    Sonoma Coast State Park is an incredibly scenic area and diverse park that offers access to many beaches and numerous hiking paths that explore gorgeous, rugged coastlines and rolling hills. This hike, beginning at Wright's Beach, takes you to Goat Rock, at the end of Blind Beach.

    The Kortum Trail starts at Wright's Beach (or, for a shorter hike, at the northwest side of the Shell Beach parking lot). The path is mostly easy and level, running parallel to the lovely beaches at the bottom of sheer, plunging cliffs. The views along this trail are extraordinary, but use caution as you approach overlooks near the bluffs, as they can be unstable. You will also pass Pleistocene "rubbing rocks," which were likely frequented by prehistoric mammoths and other mega-animals for use in their bathing and grooming activities.

    The trail will eventually leave the coastal bluffs and ascend toward the hills, reaching wonderful views of Goat Rock and Blind Beach from a ridge. Descending the hill, the path will hug the road until approaching the Blind Beach parking lot. For further adventures, continue your journey from Blind Beach to the Russian River.

    The weather along the coast can rapidly change, so be prepared for fog and wind as you explore this spectacular part of the coast. Dogs are not permitted on the Kortum Trail.

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    Agua Caliente, CA
    Pathfinder | 121 pts
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    I actually did the reverse hike (Shell beach to blind beach and back). This is a really beautiful hike. It's pretty easy for the most part.... towards the end though, to make it to the top of the hill, there are a couple of steep places. One's hiking companion is the Pacific Ocean and the amazing and rugged Sonoma coast. Will definitely do this hike again...and again...and again...

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    Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

    Bubba Suess
    "Coastal bluffs, great views of the coast, and craggy rock formations are all highlights of this easy yet beautiful hike on the Sonoma Coast. The ocean is in view for nearly the entire hike, and there is beach access at a few points on the trail. The Sonoma Coast is an extraordinarily scenic region, with high cliffs plunging into the roiling surf, grassy meadows, lovely beaches, and rugged rock formations. A significant portion of the coastline falls under the jurisdiction of Sonoma Coast State Park." Read more
    "Trail along uplifted marine terraces, past mammoth rubbing rocks to a beach" Read more
    Linda and David Mullally
    "The fact that this section of the California Coastal Trail is tucked between two quaint Northern California communities, Bodega Bay and Jenner, is an added bonus. The panorama is classic rugged Sonoma coast along bluffs punctuated by coves and beaches at the edge of meadows. The mouth of the Russian River at the end of the hike is the scenic pièce de résistance. This is one of many highlights along Sonoma Coast State Park’s almost 20 miles of spectacular coastline. Named in the 1990s after veterinarian and dedicated environmentalist Bill Kortum, the dirt and grassy trail runs along the bluffs at the edge of the coastal prairie, with CA 1 visible in the distance on its way to the mouth of the Russian River. Both Goat Rock and the Russian River at the end of the trail are significant landmarks. If you’re not up to the entire length of this hike, there are several great perches for a picnic on this island of rock before going back to the trailhead the way you came. If you are going the distance, follow the trail up to the saddle and back down the other side. You can linger and scamper around the outcrop on the way back. You will have a great view of Goat Rock and Blind Beach from the top of this hill and all the way down to the paved road at 3.6 miles." Read more

    Trail Information

    Sonoma Coast State Park
    Trail Guides

    Coastal Trails of Northern California

    731 feet
    Elevation Gain
    Trail Type
    Skill Level
    85 feet
    Trailhead Elevation
    318 feet
    Top Elevation
    Restrooms, Views, Wild Flowers

    4 Members Completed

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