BLM opens South Side Trail, announces Salmon Pass guided hike opportunities at Headwaters


Bureau of Land Management

BLM Office:

Arcata Field Office

Media Contact:

A trail through a thick forest.

ARCATA, Calif. – The Bureau of Land Management has opened the South Side Trail in the Headwaters Forest Reserve and announced the start of guided hikes in the Salmon Pass area on the south side of the reserve, in Humboldt County.

The new South Side Trail runs parallel to the Elk River Trail beginning at the Elk River Trailhead.  The
1.6-mile trail is accessible via a seasonal bridge over the Elk River.  It is narrow and winding and includes several moderate climbs. The trail loops back to the Elk River Trail, reconnecting at the one-mile marker.

“The trail is limited to hikers to conserve the ecological integrity of the area,” said Molly Brown, manager of the Arcata Field Office.  “Bike riders and those hiking with their dogs can experience the reserve on the Elk River Trail.”

The Elk River Trail includes segments for all abilities.  The first mile is paved and accessible for those with mobility difficulties.  The remaining four-and-a-half miles are moderately strenuous, culminating with a half-mile loop through old-growth redwoods.  The total hike is 10.5 miles.

The BLM also announced that it is now accepting reservations for docent-led hikes on the Salmon Pass Trail at the south end of the reserve.  Hikes are scheduled for the third Sunday of each month through November.  Hikers can reserve an outing by calling the BLM Arcata Field Office, 707-825-2300.

The Salmon Pass hike is two-and-a-half miles and moderately strenuous.  It traverses young and mid-aged forest before climbing two miles through old growth redwoods and the reserve’s largest stand of Douglas-fir trees.

Directions and additional information about the reserve are available by visiting

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.