Thursday, September 17, 2009

Eureka! Fern Canyon and a Glimpse of Redwoods

This is my last post about my August trip to Eureka and then I'll shut up. It deserves three posts because there was so much to say about it.

On two separate afternoons I did something I rarely do; I spent time outdoors. I'm not outdoorsy; never have been; everyone can get over it; it's just not my thing. I donate to The Nature Conservancy, Greenpeace, The Natural Resources Defense Council. I prefer to support Nature in that "Let me write you a check" kind of way.

However . . . my life in California has been woefully deprived of redwoods. And while there was not enough time in this trip to really do redwoods right, I did have a chance to spend an afternoon walking around Sequoia Park. The park is like a tiny little forest within the city of Eureka. In way, it's kind of like a Disney forest, full of beautiful things to see, but totally safe (no bears, no pumas*, no way to get lost).

We parked near a pond and stepped into the woods -

There were many paths to explore -

and ancient, exposed roots for him and me to climb -

Ferns grew in damp, grottoes fed by trickles that appeared out of nowhere -

and all around us light filtered through shades of green -

Bye trees! I'll visit you again one day!

The next day, we took a drive (a long drive) to Fern Canyon. Fern Canyon is exactly that. It's literally a canyon of ferns. Even Wikipedia doesn’t have much more to say about it.

Here's the path. See those plants growing on the walls of the canyon? Ferns. All ferns. Miles and miles of ferns.

The evading figure below is my sister doing her best Bigfoot impression. There's a lot of Bigfoot lore in the area but I believe she wears a size 6 shoe so she can't be blamed -

See this romantic pair? Us. This was the one time I forgot to ask, "does this denim jacket wrapped around my waist make me look fat?" Bigfoot should have said something before she snapped the picture -

This kind of looks like that tree army in The Lord of the Rings -

The next time I go to Fern Canyon, I'll have a better breakfast, a lighter jacket and an earlier start. There's a lot of trail and we did maybe a fifth of it. The worst part? Not very elegant restrooms. I think that may be one of the things that keeps me out of the outdoors.
All over the place in Humboldt County, even in the forest, we saw these tsunami warning signs (I love the little guy frantically climbing that hill ahead of that ginormous wave) -

Don't even think of finding shelter at the Post Office -

Speaking of little guy, what about this one who finds shelter in a rose? -

I didn't kiss him but he seems to lead a pretty princely life.

It took me a long time to get up to Humboldt County. But it won't take me that long to get back.

I confess, I'm hooked on the beauties of Humboldt County. This post joins the Friday blog parties at Hooked on Houses and The Inspired Room’s Beautiful Life Friday. Do check them out to see what others are hooked on and where others find beauty.

* Correction: At 8:30 this morning I realized how ridiculous the reference to pumas was. Aren't mountain lions mostly desert dwellers? If I'd visualized the forest-dwelling puma attack before typing, I would have realized that. But it was 2:00 in morning so I'll cut myself some slack. I should have written "deer." I think I heard that more Americans are attacked by angry deer each year than by bears and mountain lions combined. I don't blame them. I, myself, am quite often angered by the sight of anyone wearing orange.


Anonymous said...

It does look like it was a beautiful place to be. Glad you were able to go. Hope you have a good weekend!
(I'm having a shopping gift card giveaway today. If that's something that interests you, come on over and check it out!)

NV said...

WOW! Those photos are awesome. Looks like it was quite an adventure. Thanks for sharing as that way I got to go, too. :-)

Terry said...

Treebeard would be right at home. We had our Muir Woods experience. We had to see it to believe it.

Kim @ Forever Wherever said...

What a beautiful spot! We've visited Fern Canyon and Humbolt Park gives you a real appreciation for nature!

Great photos!


Pauline Wiles said...

What lovely photos - the redwoods certainly are impressive.
Those tsunami warning signs are a little unnerving though!

Anonymous said...

Oh gosh, I was hoping this was Fern (dale?) in Griffith Park. I'm missing readily available alpine splendor. Maybe I should take a trip up far north. I went through by train to Seattle but never explored the way you have. Fun

Why S? said...

Hi pk, yes, it was lovely. Thanks for stopping by.

NV, we enjoyed your company. Seriously, I'm thinking of going again next May. You're very welcome to come along.

Terry, the Muir Woods is another excellent forest experience.

Kim and Struggler, thanks for visiting and commenting.

PasadenaAdjacent - yes, you should take a trip far north. And if you're not keen on the 10 hour drive to Eureka, Alaska Air has a flight directly to Eureka from LAX. That was a surprise to me. Sure makes it a lot easier (pricey, but easier.)

Debra said...

Just letting all my followers know... I changed my url to


modernemama said...

Impressive, I've always wanted to visit the redwoods - one day I'll get there - until then the nursery has a 5' redwood for a very reasonable price. How long do you imagine before it gets to be that big?

Debra said...

The photos are gorgeous! Reminds me of our Sequoia mountains. I so love the mountains, so peaceful and serene. *sigh* I want to go now!

goddessof4 said...

Great photos!!! What a magical place!!!! Sara