We finally made it to California! After Alaska, I think I was most excited to visit California since it has such a large number of National Parks and they’re vastly different across the state. The first park on our list was Redwood National Park. This park is absolutely huge and encompasses a lot of State Park area as well.
We started from the North and stopped at Crescent City Park Headquarters first to get started. From there, we drove down the 101 which is an incredibly beautiful drive. There aren’t many places in the National Park section that allows dogs, so we went to the Cal-Barrel Road area which is one of the few. Luca and Mike biked through the giant trees while I hiked (mostly just looked up in awe)
After that, we went to check out Fern Canyon. The Ranger recommended this area, and I’m SO glad they did. It showcased that the park is more than just the iconic trees we all think of when we think of this park. Fern Canyon was so green and lush. I kept calling this area Fern Gully; it absolutely had to have been the inspiration for one of my favorite childhood movies. It’s a great place for families – it is a wonderful place to explore and let the inner child out. It’s a little long to get to this area on the coast; but totally worth it.
The Redwoods trees are breathtaking. It’s devastating that only 5% of the trees remain, thanks to logging that started in the 1800s. We got a permit for the Tall Trees Access Road, but to be honest… it’s a little bit underwhelming after exploring the rest of the park.
I received my junior ranger badge from the wonderful ranger at the Kuchel Visitor Center in the south section of the park. She and I did the “Banana Slug Slide” together. She wrapped it, while I did the moves. I think it’s going to storm the country’s clubs. After that, we went and met up with my old friend from college; Logan! Getting to reconnect with old friends is definitely one of my favorite parts of this adventure.
- If you’re looking less crowds and more privacy; I’d check out the State Park sections.
- Do NOT miss Fern Canyon. I could have explored this section for days and days.
- There are lots of things to do here besides big trees! They have incredible coastal drives and beaches and tidepools!