Welcome to Willits
Twenty miles north of Ukiah, Willits mixes NorCal dropouts with loggers and ranchers (the high school has a bull-riding team). Lamp posts on the main drag are decorated with cowboys and similar, while the heart of the place has a small-town atmosphere with an appealing clutch of idiosyncratic small shops and some solid eating choices. Though ranching, timber and manufacturing may be its mainstays, tie-dye and gray ponytails are de rigueur. For visitors, Willits has a couple of claims to fame: it is the eastern terminus of the Skunk Train and is also home to the oldest continuous rodeo in California. Willits Frontier Days & Rodeo, held annually here in July, attracts bucking bronco fans from all over the US. Fort Bragg is 35 miles away on the coast; allow an hour to navigate twisty Hwy 20.