Seattle to San Diego

Day 6: Crescent City, CA to Fortuna CA

Pacific Coast Road Trip - Day 6: Crescent City, CA to Fortuna CA

Postcard from Fortuna, California.

It was drizzling when I took off in the morning: a mystic and cool experience under the redwoods umbrella at first, a scary and uncomfortable drive on the uncovered bald edge of the Northern California hills, engulfed in brumous, hazy fog right after.

The two-hour hike at Prairie Creek helped me relax and confirmed my now forever-changed benchmark of what a tall tree is. Or what tall means, in general.

Size matters but my favorites were those Freddy Krueger’s finger-like trees, coming out of planet Earth covered in moss, giving the universe an unapologetic finger. Damn poetic.

Pursuing my goal of driving as little on the highways as possible, I took an inland diversion on a 36-mile partly unpaved scenic county road: another super fun and satisfying drive, rewarded with beautiful sunny weather on the eastern side of the national park.

The last stretch, back to the coast and to the clouds, was longer than expected, thanks to a couple of avoidable misunderstandings with the mighty GPS.

Note to self:

– Hugging a tree is a romantic thing to do.

– Hugging a tree with a white hoodie is a stupid thing to do.



Driving from Crescent City to Fortuna Cheat Sheet

Accommodation in Fortuna:

  • Travel Inn, 275 12th St, Fortuna, CA 95540. Fortuna is neither Las Vegas nor NYC. This motel is not the Bellagio or The New Yorker but it does the job.

Where to eat and what to see between Crescent City CA and Fortuna CA

  • Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, 127011 Newton B. Drury Scenic Pkwy, Orick, CA 95555 Beautiful although easy hike among some of the tallest trees in the world.
  • Six Rivers National Forest I saw a little tiny road and decided to take a diversion. At certain point I completely lost signal and I’ve almost get lost but it was worth the danger. Beautiful empty streets surrounded by forests till you can see.
  • Eel River Brewing Company1777 Alamar Way, Fortuna, CA 95540 I don’t exactly remember what I had but I remember it was big. Very, very big. Also I might have had a large tasting flight of 11 beers some of which particularly strong which explains why I don’t remember what I had for dinner.


Driving from Crescent City to Fortuna FAQ

How many miles are from Crescent City to Fortuna?

There are 102 miles between Crescent City and Fortuna. My route was a bit longer, 164 miles in total because I took a scenic (recommended) diversion via Bald Hills Road.

How long does it take to drive from Crescent City to Fortuna?

It takes about 2 hours to drive from Crescent City to Fortuna but if, and it is strongly recommended, you stop for hikes and such it will obviously take longer. I got to Fortuna about 8h after leaving Crescent City.

What’s the best thing about driving from Crescent City to Fortuna?

You drive through the redwoods forests which are magnificent. Both Crescent City and Fortuna per se are not really pretty but the forests are worth the trip

What are the major attractions along the way in a road trip from Crescent City to Fortuna?

My favorite was Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park. I wasn’t lucky enough to see Elks or other animals but walking next to these trees was nevertheless magnificent

What type of car is best to drive from Crescent City to Fortuna?

Bald Hills Road, the diversion I took towards the 6 Rivers National Forest is beautiful but mostly unpaved so, at very least a midsize is recommended. A 4WD would be even better especially if the weather is not good. If you don’t take this diversion, any car would make it.



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