Tuesday, April 19, 2016

The Mighty Redwoods


Some of the largest Redwoods in Northern California are believed to be:
a)      200 years old
b)      500 years old
c)      1,000 years old
d)     1,500 years old
For those of you who have been here before I am sure you got the answer right away.
Sasquatch?
The Redwood National Park has been on our “full-timing bucket list” for a couple years now. But each time we have been in this area we have been in the big rig and many of the roads and state parks in this area are just not big rig friendly. This time, in the smaller pickup camper we were going to make it!
But, I am getting ahead of myself. After leaving Shasta Lake last week we drove a whole 10 miles south to Redding, CA where we were going to be spending the next few days visiting Barb’s stepmother (Paula), sister-in-law (Kelly) and nieces (Heather and Holly). Barb spent much of her childhood in Redding and each time we come back to this area it is like somewhat of a homecoming.
The first night we went to dinner at Olive Garden with Paula and spent the night in her driveway. The next day we drove about 20 miles west to Whiskeytown Lake an area Barb frequented when she was younger. Several of the campgrounds and the beach were not open yet but we found Brandy Creek campground open just above one of the closed beaches. This campground looks like a picnic area that was converted into an RV area. There are no hookups but they did have a dump station and water. At $11/night (off season) it was worth the price.
Not bad for $11 a night
We had visitors both of the days that we stayed, the first day Kelly, Holly/Brandon, Heather and all their kids stopped out. We spent the afternoon grilling and catching up while the kids biked and chased lizards.
Kelly, Kailey, Heather, Barb, Holly, Brandon, Darien, McKenna and Raidyn
 We took a short hike to the beach down the bluff where the kids played in the water and Daisy had a blast retrieving pinecones that we threw into the lake.
Daisy retrieving a pine cone
We wanted to get at least one hike in so the next day Barb and I hit the trail early to hike the Whiskeytown Falls trail. Round trip this hike is a little over 3 miles. I would consider this hike somewhat strenuous on the way to the falls. It was up hill most of the way. Luckily there were plenty of smaller rapids along the way and we took our time for rest breaks and pictures. We were back to the truck in about 2 1/2 hours.
There were lots of photo ops along the way

 
 

Whiskeytown Falls
 
Until about 3 years ago these falls were a little known secret that history had forgotten. The park constructed this trail so now everyone can enjoy their beauty.
That afternoon Paula came out and supplied a great lunch of bacon wrapped tenderloins on the grill, Popeye’s mashed potatoes, baked beans and potato salad. Thank you Paula! Soon after Kelly and Heather stopped by. We get to see all of them so infrequently it is always special when we are able to get together.

Paula and Barb
Visiting done, it was time to head to the coast! When you come to this area, you really get to visit two separate and totally different attractions; the redwoods and the coast. Both of which are blog-worthy in themselves, we spent two afternoons on the coast; walking along the beaches and exploring trails along the bluffs above the ocean.
 
 

 
Poor Daisy got tired on the way up this hill!
Battery Lighthouse in Crescent City
 
Cattle along the ocean side
 Did you get the answer of the age of the trees correct? It is hard to imagine that some of these trees are over 1,000 years old and stretch longer than a football field.


King of the trees!
 The highlight of this leg of our trip to this area was our drive to Stout Grove in Crescent City . This 10 mile stretch winds through old growth redwoods. Trailers and RV’s are not allowed on the road. The road is only wide enough for one vehicle at a time, if you run into traffic from the opposite direction you need to find a pull-off to let them pass. Personally I would not take anything larger than our truck, there were a few places it was very tight on the sides and numerous areas where we were scraping braches on top of the camper. 
This tree was growing right on top of an older tree, roots and all!

See Barb at the bottom?
 It's been a while since I posted a video, this short 2 minute video gives you an idea of what the drive it like.
 
After spending 2 days in the redwoods near Crescent City we moved up the coast to Smith River were we stayed on Salmon Harbor RV Park on Hwy 101. Using our Passport America discount it was $19.00 (reg. $38) for the night. They have full hook-ups, showers and laundry. We took advantage of all of these and left with all of our electronic devices totally charged!
We are right on a cove with the ocean a few hundred yards across

If you look closely at that sandbar.....

...you can see tiny specks along the near shore.....

Seals!


Tomorrow we move about 45 miles northeast to Cave Junction where we get to visit Barb's grandmother!

18 comments:

  1. Love, love, love, the
    Oregon coast. So much green...bright green and the huge boulders on the beach are amazing. We'll be back there one day!

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    1. A different beautiful and quite a contrast from the red and tan rocks where you are in the Lake Mead area!

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  2. Great pics!! Last one is my fav! Looks like an awesome area!!

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    1. Thanks! Barb actually took that one after I posted the blog, it was so good I went back and added it.

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  3. Daisy is quite the Golden Retreiver, Jim!

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    1. She must have been channeling her retrieving skills from our golden Bailey!

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  4. Spectacular contrast:) We drove the Avenue of the Giants on a motorcycle trip. A motorcycle was definitely the way to drive through these giants...beyond words! Love the tree growing on the tree:)

    We spent a couple weeks in Redding with the MH and had a wonderful time. Great area. Love your trip along the coast...the advantage to the smaller living space...awesome backyards:)

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    1. Some of these roads would be a blast on a motorcycle!

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  5. Some of those pics looked very familiar! Isn't it just an amazing area?!

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    1. Kinda funny how you will see almost the same picture on someone else's blog when they visit an area!

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  6. It looks like the adventure is off to a great start. The pictures with the new camera are great. Did you slow down the shutter speed with the waterfall pictures? It's not very common to catch a sasquatch. Someday we shall get to that area.

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    1. We are in Sasquatch country and I got lucky spotting this one! I used a tripod and slowed down the shutter speed a bit.

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  7. Thanks for the tour of the Redwoods...those are some big ass trees! Looks like you've got some nice weather along the coast too. Great pics!
    Safe travels

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    1. This is the best weather we have had in our last 4 visits to the coast, no rain and upper 60's! Looks like we are going to pay for it in the next couple days however.

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  8. Looks like you're adjusting well to camper life. We've visited the OR coast once and loved it, one of these days we'll be back.

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    1. It has it's fair share of rain but very beautiful!

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  9. Beautiful pics and Barb looks so happy. Daisy ...ah Daisy I miss her :)

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    1. Daisy misses you too! Well really she misses you homemade biscuits......

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