Saturday, July 21, 2012

Camping Among the Trees

In addition to having a date night to celebrate our anniversary we took a three day camping trip in Northern California at the Redwood State Park. Chris and I have only been camping one other time together and that was in a large group. This was just the two of us!

We've lived in California for over two years and rarely get out and explore. A few months back I was getting restless and told Chris we needed to do something or go somewhere. Little did we know that most camp sites are booked solid all summer long (well in advance). So, we altered our plans and instead of going to Yosemite National Park as we had talked about, we drove north to the Redwoods. Chris had driven through them years ago and had always wanted to go back, so this worked out great.

We got to our campsite Friday late afternoon. Driving into our campsite was just the beginning of the beauty we would experience in the days ahead. Once we got our tent set up we set out to explore a near by trail.

The trees were so tall and the colors so beautiful, it was hard to stop taking pictures! For dinner that night we had sausages and hobo-potatoes (which take forever btw). On Saturday we got a fairly early start and drove to a few highlighted spots the ranger told us about.

But first we had to get gas . . . at the only station within 20 miles. Check this out! They had one pump and charged an arm and a leg and only took cash. But what other choice did we have? 

Fern Canyon is exactly what it sounds like, a canyon covered in ferns. It was so green! The trail was fun too. At points there were planks to walk across since there was a bit of a creek running through the canyon. And at other points you had to walk across small rocks and try your best not to get wet (this really tested my balance). 

There were two trees the ranger told us to stop and look at.  The first is called "Corkscrew" and is three trees that wrapped around each other twisting all the way up. It was huge and really neat. I was even a little adventurous and climbed up in it! Chris took a vertical panorama shot of it since you couldn't see the whole tree in one photo.

The next one is called "Big Tree"as it used to be the tallest tree in the park until 8 feet of the top broke off. Now it is the second tallest tree. It's 302 feet tall and 21 feet wide. This is also a panorama shot of about five photos put together.

Then came the longer hike we had planned. It was just over 3 miles and made a loop cover three different trails. It was gorgeous. The first half of the hike was really fun (and mostly flat); I did make one bad move and ended up on the ground but thankfully was not injured. . . falling down just feels wrong . . . and totally embarrassing. Like it should not happen after you learn to walk, you know!

The second half of the trail was a bit harder, more inclines and narrower paths. It seemed like it would go on forever . . . and about one mile from the finish line, I started complaining and getting tired. But, then it was over and it felt good to push myself and finish (that really wasn't a choice!).

After finding a place to have a picnic lunch (found a place with a view of the ocean . . . foggy, just like the city) we drove to the north end of the park and found new favorite spot. This grove was absolutely gorgeous. And the drive to get there was pretty amazing too with trees on either side of you, curving roads and beauty all around.

And then we stumbled on to a beach! There was sun and warmth and rest to be had! We stayed much longer that we had planned but still made it back to the tent in plenty of time to make dinner. We had hamburgers and roasted corn on the cob. It was so good!

Sunday we packed up camp after breakfast (banana-nut oatmeal and eggs) and headed home. Chris wanted me to get some more practice driving his standard truck so I took the wheel for about 30 minutes before my legs started getting sore (whimpy, I know). It was good to get another go at driving stick. . . it had been three years since my last attempt!

It was a short weekend getaway, but it was great!

1 comment:

Sharon M said...

What a beautiful camping trip! Yeah, we visited the Redwoods when... let's see I was 15 so Chris was 13? And don't feel too bad about falling down. I still fall and roll my ankles fairly frequently, even though I'm in my 30s! I've been a klutz my whole life. And it looks like my poor son is going to follow in my footsteps, ha ha!