This free map and guide highlights natural areas where people can enjoy a variety of coastal habitats while providing in-depth information about local natural history and the importance of conserving the beauty and diversity of our coast.


Funding and support for this edition of the map was generously provided by the US Fish and Wildlife Service, the Gerald O. and Susan Hanson Family Fund, Humboldt County Resource and Conservation District, the Bureau of Land Management Arcata Office.


Free guides will be available at area visitor locations including; the California Welcome Center, Eureka Chamber of Commerce, Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuges’ Richard J. Guadagno Headquarters and Visitor Center, Bureau of Land Management Arcata office. The public may also request a free guide by sending a self-addressed, #10 envelope with .61 postage to: Friends of the Dunes, P.O. Box 186, Arcata, CA 95518.


The Ma-le'l Dunes offers a range of recreational opportunities that allow visitors to experience a diverse and dynamic coastal landscape of forests and salt marshes, sand dunes and beaches.

The northern portion of Ma-le'l is part of Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuge. Trail access is limited to pedestrians only. The road to the northern parking lot is closed to vehicles Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday in order to provide visitors with a "wilderness ' experience.


The southern portion of Ma-le'l, managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) allows for dog walking and equestrian use on designated trails. Please protect natural and cultural resources by observing visitor guidelines.

Copies of the Ma-le'l Dunes Trail Map are available at the Humboldt Coastal Nature Center at (707) 444-1397 or the BLM Arcata Field Office (707) 825-2300.




There are a lot of great wild places in Humboldt County where you can take your dog. Please keep in mind that there are a variety of different land management agencies, each with different management priorities and resources to protect. The map below is color-coded to help you become familiar with each sites specific regulations and help you pick an appropriate place to bring your dog.



Learn how your actions as a responsible dog owner help protect wildlife and everyone's enjoyment of wild places. If you need more detailed access information about Humboldt's wild places, please contact the land managers listed here, or see the Humboldt Bay Beaches Dunes and Wetlands Map .



The conservation of coastal dunes in Humboldt County is accomplished through the cooperation of public agencies, private organizations, and individual community members. Friends of the Dunes works closely with the following agencies and organizations to help conserve coastal environments.







  • Humboldt Coastal Dunes Cooperative

    • The Humboldt Coastal Dunes Cooperative facilitates coordinated ecosystem management of coastal dune environments, through collaboration among stakeholders. Dunes COOP Bylaws & MOU, and Archived Agendas and Minutes can be accessed online.





  • Northcoast Environmental Center

    • At the Northcoast Environmental Center, we educate, activate, and when necessary litigate on behalf of the Klamath-Siskiyou bioregion.