40 yrs bike touring
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Santa Barbara,CA.
Bikes: Bruce Gordon Ti Rock N Road , Fat Chance Mountain Tandem 
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First acquire the Kreb's Bike map for Northern California
California North Coast Bicycle Touring Map (Map # C-1)
The very best bicycling guide to the Northern California coast. Covers from the Oregon border to San Francisco in excellent detail. Shows quiet back roads that aren't included in other coastal bike guides. Includes paved and dirt alternate routes, a precise elevation profile of the main route, bike trails, stores, cafes, camping, lodging, points of interest, and much more. Legend in English and German.
or the AAA map of NW California. Both will show the route below.
If you do not mind some headwinds and an initial gravel/dirt road section you can reach Happy Camp by heading North on 1 from Mendocino to two miles beyond Rockport after the road turns away from the ocean and starts to climb to the Usal Road turnoff on the left. ( Muddy during the rainy season)
It borders on the Sinkyone Wilderness State Park all the way to Four Corners passing Bear Harbor along the way (nice camping among the elk herd). Continue North on the Chemise Mtn. Road passing the turn off to Shelter Cove on the coast. The road turns into the King's Peak Road through the King Range Nat'l Conservation Area. Follow to the junction with Mattole River Road just West of Honeydew. This is the Lost Coast Route. Go left for some climbing to reach Ferndale five mile from Hwy 101 that leads to Eureka.
From Eureka head North to Arcata on 101 to 299 head East over Lord Ellis Summit (2262 feet); Just beyond the summit take the Bair Road (gravel) through the Hoopa Indian Reservation for 18 miles to junction with Hwy 96 and continue North to Happy Camp then Indian Creek Road over the Siskyous to join 199.
One negative was passing through the Hoopa Reservation on a weekend evening-some hostility from people obviously drinking and driving. The other was heavy log truck traffic on 96 depending on the economy.
Lots of terrain variety and avoids lots of main road traffic. I have enjoyed this route in both directions. The Kreb's map will give give you lots of alternatives that I have not mentioned. I hope this helps you make your choice of route.