California Department of Fish and Wildlife

Mattole River Ecological Reserve - Mendocino County

Wildlife Viewing hiking
The symbols above are activities permitted on this Ecological Reserve. Click for more info.

Location: Mendocino County - southwest of Garberville

Phone Number: (707) 445-6493

Map: Directional Map (PDF)

Special Restrictions: Hunting, fishing, and camping are prohibited.

Access: From Highway 101 in Garberville, take the Redwood Drive exit through Redway to Redway Drive. Redway Drive becomes Briceland Thorn Road; continue on Briceland Thorn Road to the Reserve, 3 miles south of Whitethorn.

Description: This Reserve represents 1,354 acres of large stands of old-growth redwood and Douglas fir trees, mixed with black oak, tanoak, and madrone. The forest provides ideal habitat for numerous species of old-growth dependent wildlife, such as the marbled murrelet and spotted owl, as well as goshawks and other birds of prey. Located near the headwaters of the Mattole River, the clear creeks of the area support many aquatic species, including salamanders and frogs. Mammals that are commonly seen here include deer, foxes, raccoons, bears, and porcupines.

Recreational Use:

  • This area provides spectacular birdwatching and wildlife viewing opportunities. Wood ducks and other waterfowl, kingfishers, herons, quail, grouse, pileated woodpeckers, and many other bird species use this forest for nesting.

Hunting: Not allowed

Facilities: none

PLEASE NOTE: Area regulations are subject to change. Special restrictions on recreational uses, hunt days and methods of take are listed in the current year's issue of Hunting and Other Public Uses on State and Federal Areas, available at CDFW offices and places where licenses are sold.

KC/WLB 6/09