Sunday, July 10, 2011

Humboldt Redwoods State Park

I love the redwoods.  I explained why when I wrote about our August, 2008, visit.  I won't go into all of it again, but I will say that I am continually amazed when I am in their presence.  Like anything else, I suppose if you live in a coastal redwood area, you might grow accustomed to the grandeur that surrounds you, but for me, I never stop saying, "Look at THAT tree!"  "Ohmygosh!  Look at THAT one!"  "Look at how tall THAT one is!"  "Wow, that tree is HUGE!"  The fact that they all start out like this is even more amazing. (Yes, this picture is as close-up as it appears to be.)

I won't bore you with the nearly 400 pictures from our June, 2010, trip to Humboldt Redwoods State Park (map here), most of them of trees, but here are a few highlights. Hubby on the bridge below for scale.

This four-sided fireplace stands in the California Federation of Women's Clubs Grove, and is one of the many things to see along the Avenue of the Giants.

Here's some information about its designer, Julia Morgan (click to enlarge):

Scale is always hard to capture in pictures, but the fireplace is huge, as is this picnic table that is situated next to it. 

For scale, here is a normal-sized picnic table.

 I thought it was funny that in the middle of the giant picnic table, surrounded by giant trees, was this little oasis of teeny tiny plants.

Just down the road from our camp, was the Cuneo Creek Horse Group Camp.  We hiked over there from our Hamilton Barn camp one day.  We picnicked and enjoyed the beautiful scenery and chatted with the camp host.  I didn't know there were such things as camp hosts, but this seems like a great way to see some beautiful places at a minimal cost.

One of the last hikes that we did was up to Look Prairie.  There is, as the name suggests a large prairie area, which is a nice contrast to all the forest.  

Along the trail, we found these crazy-looking little sombrero flowers.  I have no idea what they are, but I would be remiss if I didn't include them here, seeing as how Hubby spent a good 10 minutes trying to get a good shot of one for me.   

Although there were a lot of burned areas, some of which weren't too pretty, overall this was a beautiful hike, and the charred remains managed to highlight the beauty of what remained.

We hiked all around the Humboldt Redwoods State Park area, checking out all the shorter little loop trails and groves along with some of the longer trails, like the Bull Creek Trail North and South (loop) which took us across the Eel River.  That water was cold, but boy did it feel good to stick our feet in it about half-way through the trail!

I can't recommend this area highly enough.  If you've never seen the coastal redwoods, put it on your list of things to do.  If camping's not your thing, that's OK; you can easily tour the redwoods by car.  Driving through is still impressive, but do stop along the way to walk among the giants.  



Wendy said...

wow, how amazing! this is definitely one of my dream trips. Love that sign that explains "giant tree"

Dreamybee said...

Haha-In case you were confused and thought it was a "Big Tree" or "Huge Tree"!

I hope you get to make the trip some day--I think it's something everyone should experience at least once.