Biking Humboldt County: The Blue Lake Special 

Once again, we paid a visit to our good friend, Charlie, in Humboldt County. Ever since he moved from Los Angeles to Manila, along the far northern coast of California, we have been paying him annual visits. Last year, we had a blast exploring the Mad River Trail by bike. This year, we wanted to pay a visit to some new friends who live in Blue Lake, and, as is my nature, I was itching to do that trip by bike.

Our new friends in Blue Lake are mutual friends of Charlie’s who had joined us for last December’s trip to Cuba. This weekend was a bit of a reunion for some of us who’d taken that trip together, including a couple of others who had come up from southern California. One of the Southern Californians agreed to join us for the bike ride, so we all met up at Revolution Bicycles in Arcata to pick up our rental bikes.

Charlie, in front of Revolution Bicycles

We started out heading along the campus of Humboldt State University, then working our way over to West End Road, enjoying bike lanes for much of this first part.

Riding along the Humboldt State campus

Soon enough, we were on a nice country road (West End), riding past stacked logs and gorgeous scenery. We saw occasional homes, meadows, forest, farmland, and horses, as well as some other bicyclists.

Log piles lining the road

One of our Blue Lake friends had recommended we take a short side trip at Warren Creek Road, so we did. We found some charming aged railroad bridges that begged to be photographed.

El Cochinito
Tres Amigos, on an adventure

My favorite part was when we rather suddenly found ourselves swallowed up in the shade of a forest. It was beautiful in that magical way that makes you feel lucky to have stumbled upon one of nature’s special treats.

As we got closer to Blue Lake, we encountered more farms.


Riding into “downtown Blue Lake” was endearing. (Can a town with a population of 1,253 have a downtown?) I just had to stop and snap a photo of the cute little Blue Lake Museum.

Blue Lake Museum

We joined our friends for a backyard barbecue and mojitos, and enjoyed picking figs right off the tree. The return ride afterward was a brisk delight in the twilight.

This is a ride I could do again and again, and not grow tired of the scenery. Who knows – maybe this will become a summer tradition.

Our route from Arcata to Blue Lake – just 10 miles each way.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s