Historically, Schooner Gulch is within the territory of the coastal branch of the Central Pomo indians which extends from the mouth of the Navarro River to the mouth of the Gualala River. This area was frequented by Russians and native Alaskans hunters as early as 1812, and by Mexican land owners in the 1840's. John Galloway was the first recorded occupant of the area. John was born in Scotland and occupied an area of Schooner Gulch between 1866 and 1868, which was largely used as a milling operation for timber. Logging continued at Schooner Gulch til the late 1800's, through various other milling operations.

Another interesting part of the history of Schooner Gulch is the Galloway School. The school land, as you can see by the name, was donated by John and Margaret Galloway. Galloway School operated for 62 years, from 1874 to 1936 with never more than 40 students. In 1940 the school lot was sold, and land around the lot was farmed by the Nobles family until 1986 at which time the land was sold to the State of California.

Legend has it that Schooner Gulch got its name from a story in which a shooner was sited, one evening, stranded on the beach in the mouth of the gulch, yet in the morning showed no evidence of being there. There is, however, no clarification of that.

Schooner Gulch State Beach

A little more than Fifty-two acres of trails and beach, Schooner Gulch is located on the Pacific Coast, 3 miles south of Point Arena at the intersection of Highway 1 and Schooner Gulch Rd. Lying to the west of Hwy 1, Schooner Gulch consists of gentle rolling marine terraces, steep coastal bluffs, and sandy beaches. To the east of Hwy 1, flowing from the north end of the park into the Pacific ocean to the south at Bowling Ball Beach, is Galloway Creek.

At this time the park offers one southern trail begining at Highway 1, where limited parking is available and proceeds downward to the beach area.

For more information call our district office phone at 707 937-5804.

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