Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park

Trip Start May 04, 2010
Trip End May 21, 2010

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Where I stayed
The Hiouchi House on the Smith River

Flag of United States  , California
Saturday, May 15, 2010


-      Driving the Howland Hill Road through Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park.  At times, you can reach out and touch the redwoods along this narrow gravel potholed road that winds itself through the park.  It sets the tone for the day as I feel we are leaving civilization behind and entering this primordial moss laden old growth tree world.  The colors are green (how many different shades of green are there?) and browns.  This road is worth going out of your way for – what an experience!

      Walking through Stout Grove.  The parking area is among the large redwoods, so I feel that our metal chariots are intruding on the forest; we drive into a parking space between two large redwoods.  It seems that the only noises are those of people talking – some on their cell phones and you can’t help to hear the conversations or small clusters of people chatting.  We let each group pass and find ourselves pretty much to ourselves or at least with others who quietly talk.  I feel like I want to whisper so as not to intrude on the quiet of the forest.  Looking up at the tall trees, I feel tiny.  For a description of the Stout Grove Trail:

      Lunch by the side of the stream.  Driving along Howland Hill Road, Harvey spots a pull out that seems to have a path down to the stream.  We bring our sandwiches and water,  and follow the path down to the stream.  Here we sit in the sun, listen to the moving water, gaze at the redwoods on the opposite side of the stream and eat lunch.  After eating, Harvey lies back and takes a nap while I wander and capture photographs.

      Walking through Simpson-Reed Grove.  After our lunch sojourn by the river, we continued along Howland Hill Road towards Crescent City, with the intention of driving a loop back to our starting point in Hiouchi.  From Crescent City we drive on Route 199 a well paved two lane road that winds itself through redwood forest.  We stop at Siimpson-Reed Grove. This easily accessible trail has a lot of variety.  It’s a circular loop and although one starts out hearing road noise it does recede as we go further into the trail.


      Driving Howland Hill Road & seeing the giant redwoods on either side of the road

      Gazing at the landscape in the redwood forest and being overwhelmed by the density, diversity and lushness of all the trees and plants.  Do I take in the broad vistas?  But wait, look near my feet and see these interesting plants.  There is just so much to look at.  And how can I possibly capture this in a photograph?

      Lunch by the stream.  Knowing that we are surrounded by all these giant trees, hearing the sound of the stream and feeling the warmth of the sun!

      Coming back to our home rental next to the Smith River after a day out among the redwoods.  In a sense we feel like we are still among the trees – the entire back of the house is all picture windows or sliding glass doors that open to a deck and from any window you can see the river and trees on the other side of the river.  Open any door and you hear the sound of the river.  Sublime.

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