Arcata Field Office

Elkhorn Ridge Wilderness

South Fork Eel River in the Elkhorn Ridge Wilderness 
Elkhorn Ridge Wilderness

Location: Mendocino County, Five miles southeast of Leggett, California. 

Area Description: Elkhorn Ridge Wilderness encompasses 11,112 acres in Mendocino County. There are two major forest types encompassing the area; the mixed evergreen forest and the redwood forest.  Late-successional and old-growth stands of Douglas-fir are scattered throughout the area.  Chaparral communities are found mainly on south-facing slopes and ridgetops. 

The South Fork Eel Wild and Scenic River flows through and bisects the wilderness area.

Notable wildlife species include the federally-threatened northern spotted owl and other old-growth forest related species, the federally-endangered bald eagle and peregrine falcon.  Anadromous fish species such as Chinook salmon, coho salmon, and steelhead utilize the South Fork Eel River and its tributaries as rearing and spawning grounds.

Getting There: Access to the wilderness area is from U.S. Highway 101 at Laytonville, west on Branscomb Road, then north on Wilderness Lodge Road for 2 miles, along Jack of Hearts Road for 3 miles, and right on Elkhorn Ridge Road for 2 miles to the wilderness boundary.

Nonfederal Lands: Non-federal lands do not exist within the wilderness area.

Additional Information: Signs indicating the wilderness boundary have been posted. Mechanized or motorized vehicles are not allowed in this wilderness area. Hunting is allowed under state laws. Fishing is not allowed. Pets are allowed, and must be under the owner's control at all times. Camping is allowed, limited to 14 days. Campfires are allowed unless prohibited during seasonal fire restrictions. Gathering wood for campfires, when permitted, is limited to dead and down materials.  Do not cut live vegetation.

The BLM encourages all travelers exploring public lands to use propylene glycol based antifreeze/coolant in their touring and recreation vehicles.  Proven safer, it will have minimal impacts on the wildlife and the environment should a leak occur.

Elkhorn Ridge Wilderness


  • BLM Wilderness Map
  • BLM 100K Series Map 
    • Covelo
  • USGS 7.5 Minute Quadrangles
    (Topo Maps) 
    • Leggett
    • Lincoln Ridge
    • Tan Oak Park
  • Interactive Map
  • Guide to other Maps

Legal Description



Leave No Trace

Know Before You Go 

Wilderness List

National Conservation Lands

Contact Us

Bureau of Land Management
Arcata Field Office
1695 Heindon Road
Arcata, CA 95521-4573
Phone: (707) 825-2300
Fax: (707) 825-2301
Office Hours: 7:45 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., M-F
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