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Lacks Creek

 4.3 (10)
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Map Key

10.9 Miles 17.6 Kilometers



1,647' 502 m


-1,646' -502 m



Avg Grade (3°)


Max Grade (20°)

3,829' 1,167 m


2,674' 815 m


Shared By Rocky Brashear



Getting forecast...

A mountain bike-specific trail system, part of an 8,000 acre recreation area.

Rocky Brashear

Dogs Off-leash

Features -none-

Family Friendly Excellent picnicking and accessible trails.

No motorized vehicles on singletrack trails.


Epic scenery with fast and fun trails through Oak Prairies and Old Growth Fir forests. About 10 miles of singletrack that can be linked together for about a 16 mile ride, or looped until you can't ride anymore. Expect moderately difficult, punchy climbs, some technical sections and lots of fast, tree-dodging singletrack. The trail drains well and is rideable year-round unless covered by snow.

There are ample shuttle opportunities as well, with the most popular being Tomfoolery (10+ minute descent) and Chutes (The defacto DH course at 3 minutes or so, but very steep and technical).

Driving Directions: Drive east on Highway 299 for 17.8 miles from Highway 101. Turn left at the Redwood Valley turn off (Bair Road) and travel 3.9 miles. Make a right turn at the sign that reads "Hoopa - 22 miles", and travel 5.9 miles up this windy gravel road. The entrance is a left turn. For a map, check out the BLM website. For current road conditions please do not hesitate to call the Arcata Field Office at (707) 825-2300.

Need to Know

Directional signage is not yet installed, but the trail system does not have many trail junctions so a general sense of your location and the map will usually do. There are now BLM paddles at all trailheads. There is no water on site, and no services within an hour's drive, so be prepared. Cell phone coverage is spotty but it exists on most of the system.


Please be aware there may be construction in progress. Technical features on the trail are not marked.

Currently, the start point for the trail system is off of Pine Ridge Road. Take it from the Lacks Creek road junction where the kiosk is located. We recommend driving up Pine Ridge road until you reach the main parking area next to the large Black Oak Prairie. This main parking lot is an excellent central location for riding the system, with views to the ocean for post ride hanging out and convenient jump trail sessioning.

Tomfoolery or Chutes are popular shuttle runs.

The "standard" ride goes something like this:

From the main parking area, ride Pine Ridge Trail north, then climb the fire road to the beginning of Stormy Saddle Trail. Climb Stormy Saddle the the top, then descend, crossing the road once about 2/3 of the way down. From the bottom of Stormy Saddle take Pine Ridge Trail back to the parking lot, where you'll descend on Tomfoolery to Midslope Road. Turn left on Midslope and climb about half an hour, passing the bottom of Chutes along the way, to Lacks Mountain Trail (look for the campground to your right at the top of the climb) which you'll want to do counterclockwise, followed by Punchbowl and maybe a quick trip back down Chutes (experts only). Take the road back to either the Jump Trail, the upper section of Tomfoolery or Runaround, all of which end back at the parking area. This ride is about 16 miles in length with over 3,000 feet of climbing.

History & Background

Most of this property was recently acquired by BLM after being heavily logged over the last 40-50 years. BLM has been working hard to reclaim historic Oak prairies that had been encroached upon by Fir forests. Evidence of this work and fuels thinning projects can be seen throughout the property.


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Your Check-Ins


Jul 4, 2018
Nolan Sundrud
Awesome trail! Worth getting to, but it is out of the way. Shuttling was definitely worth it.
Oct 12, 2017
Jason Allen
1st time there. surprisingly fun! Had my CD Specialized Camber. Great weather in October and Great Views when clear
Jul 21, 2017
Damian Andersen
great trail system. well built with good variety!
Jun 24, 2017
Mickey Fimbres
The directions to get to the trailhead need improvement. I started in the wrong place and made it more difficult than needed. 8mi — 3h 00m
May 6, 2017
Errol Previde
Trails are in great shape....LOTS of ticks!!!!! 10mi — 2h 00m
Feb 15, 2017
John Windschitl
Oct 19, 2016
Paula Churchill
Long drive in to trailhead! 12mi
Jun 21, 2015
Quinn Pawlick
This place is awesome so far.

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Trail Ratings

  4.3 from 10 votes


  4.3 from 10 votes
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in California


96 Views Last Month
11,820 Since Feb 23, 2015
Intermediate Intermediate

Marcus Appy
Arcata, CA
Marcus Appy   Arcata, CA
We rode from the main trailhead out the pine ridge trail, then up the road to pick up stormy saddle. Back pine ridge and down section 3. Then a long grind back to the car, and a couple of loops on the jump trail for a fun ending. Fun trails with a bit of everything. The trails will continue to get better as people ride them...Drive is less than an hour from Arcata, so very do-able. Good stuff! Jun 29, 2015
I didn't realize until I signed up that the site is for mtn bikers. BLM, is an outsider supposed to know? A plain search box would: if you know the name of the trail or area, why have to enter "within __ miles" of " -- "? My question not about directions to Lacks Creek area but where it is situated relative to familiar places & features in the area. Jun 14, 2017
Beware clicking the "directions" button on the MTB app. Google took me via Old 3 Creek Road which is gated several miles in. The driving directions in the main post need some improvement. It would be good for the directions to take you all the way to the parking area. Tomfoolery was a lot of fun. Beware of ticks! Every time I came to a stop they would crawl up my leg. I ended up with 2 afterwards Jun 28, 2017

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