**For some reason, some of these pics ended up grainy in their smaller forms. Please "embiggen" for full effect.**
We moved south from our one-day visit to Crater Lake with our entrance into California, the promised land, the land of gold, the Golden State. I was really excited for some reason to visit NorCal; it seems almost like a land apart, and its variety is beyond words.
We drove from Medford, OR to Crescent City, CA, first stopping at a local redwoods visitor center and then on a brief, leg-stretching hike on the Hiouchi Trail. The redwoods on that end of the trails aren't much, but it did provide us access to the very green Smith River, where the boys played a bit.
We then drove into Crescent City to the Lighthouse Inn in CC. After checking in and planning a bit, we left for our first stop of the day, Jedidiah Smith Redwoods SP. The website Redwood Hikes spoke of JSRSP in almost rapturous tones, making our opening day an exciting one. Howland Hill Rd lead out of Crescent City almost directly behind the hotel and climbed up into the forest. Those who know me well also must realized that HHRd is unpaved, mixed-terrain if you understand me. We spent maybe 30min total slowly climbing the hill and stopping at a couple key points. The pictures here cannot capture what a thrill it was for me, imaging entering such a "cathedral" on two wheels among the giants. It became more special when we passed a mtbiker rolling along at the far end of HHRd.
|Cars giving a bit of perspective.|
|What's missing? A bicycle, of course.|
At the northern end we parked and did a lollipop hike of Stout Grove (with a side branch making for a slightly longer hike), listed by the website and by a book we had on hand as the best hike in the entire redwoods, perhaps not the best-known, but the best. Again, my pics won't do it justice. If you love the outdoors, you have to go one time in your life. It's not just a question of, "boy, those trees are tall!". It's not that but so much more. I don't concern myself much with the role of the creator these days, but be it Yaweh, the big elephant on the turtle, science, or the flying spaghetti monster, the creator did things right in Stout Grove.
|Trolls under the bridge on the entry trail.|
|L looking up.|
|L the Ewok running down a fallen log.|
|A little bit of camera fun.|