The eighteen miles of highway
between Crescent City and the Oregon state line provide
scenic highlights and more good fishing opportunities.
However, before leaving Crescent City, you may wish to
explore lakes Earl and Talawa, which are just north of
town via Northcrest Drive.
These landlocked lagoons are prime stopping
places for more than 250 species of birds using the
Pacific Flyway. The park includes 2,500 acres of ponds,
dunes and marshes. Kellogg Beach is just north of the
marsh area with more impressive dunes.
The tiny village of Smith River is
13 miles south of the Oregon border, where the Smith
meets the Pacific. The flat riverlands brought farmers to
the valley in the mid-1800s. It's the Easter Lily
"capital of the world" with blooms covering the farms in
July. Residents celebrate the lily with an "Easter in
July Festival" each second weekend in July. The Arcata
Lumber Company -- the major redwood firm in the region --
has its tree nursery in the village.
The Smith is famous for its steelhead and
salmon and is the last completely undammed river in
California. The local chamber of commerce calls it the
"Crown Jewel" of the state's scenic rivers, and they're
probably right. The Rowdy Creek Fish Hatchery is
the only hatchery in the United States operated by a
non-profit society. It's next to the post office on Fred
Haight Drive and is open to the public for tours, Monday
North Bank Road, heading northeast
from Smith River, is a scenic backroad drive to Grants
Pass, Oregon. This is a favorite winter fishing area for
salmon and steelhead. Ruby Van Deventer County
Park features picnicking, fishing, river-kayaking and
float trips during summer months.
Pelican Beach -- just south of the
Oregon line -- is your final place to soak up the
often-elusive Northern California sun before leaving the
state. The beach offers good walks and beachcombing.
The popularity of fishing here is responsible
for several outstanding resorts. Ship Ashore
Resort (707-487-3141) is a Best Western motel with 50
units, hot tubs, a penthouse and several units with
kitchens. The motel includes a restaurant and lounge. The
resort holds two salmon derbies each year with proceeds
going to the Rowdy Creek Fish Hatchery. The resort also
operates an RV park.
Pelican Beach Motel (707-487-7661) on Hwy. 101,
has ocean views. A restaurant and cocktail lounge are
right on the beach. The Sea Scape Motel
(707-487-7333) is also beach-side, on Hwy. 101 with
kitchen units. Salmon Harbor Resort is an RV park
with river-front sites, boat launch and dock plus other