Sunday, July 21, 2013

The Majesty of the Redwoods

I'm not really a numbers person. Telling me that a tree is 16' in diameter and 250' in height might elicit a programmed, "Oh wow!" but there really won't be any recognition of what that actually means.

Seeing and experiencing them in person is an entirely different story. Walking through the Armstrong Woods National State Park by myself (with camera in hand, of course!) was a day that will always linger with me.

Besides the redwoods themselves, it was wonderful to be walking through a forest, experiencing a type of nature that you rarely can experience in Southern California. The way the moss covered some of the fallen trees made them appear to be alive, as if they were some previously undiscovered mysterious green creature.

At first glance, this collection of roots startled me, as I mistook it for a snake.

A cross-section of a redwood was on display, putting the age of the trees in perspective. They've witnessed a lot of history.

Guerneville may have been hot and muggy, but the canopy of trees provided cool shade.

There were lots of different hiking trails that blended in perfectly without seeming to be too invasive.

Looking up, it would be easy to get dizzy when viewing the tops of the trees.

Hiking up to the top, the trees began to thin out and the temperatures began to climb.

Still, the journey was worth every bead of sweat!

The view from the top was extraordinary, as this panoramic shot can attest to:

A splash of purple from a thistle:

A lot of interesting wildlife was spotted, including this vulture. Better keep moving!

Bambi come to life:

A jay enjoying the shade of the tree:

My three hour hike took me back to where I started. Last shot for today is a vertical panorama that shows the redwoods from the roots and up:

I feel so fortunate to have been able to experience this. City folk who have not walked through here have no idea what they're missing!

See more Armstrong Redwood photos on my Redwoods web page.

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K. Martinez said...

You did a beautiful job photographing Armstrong Redwoods State Reserve. I love Pic #10 and #13. Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

I recognize that wide vista, having hiked down into that basin many times. There is a nice campsite by the stream at a place called Mannings Flats, about 7-8 miles NE from the summit where your photo was made. You had a good hike to get to that spot, I can attest.

Re wildife, best to watch for the wild pigs there. Those are savage animals, no quarter given and lots of them out there. The State used to trap the "excess" animals, but no longer after the Parks debacle. There are plenty of replacements.

You're right, Dave. City dwellers would be better off to get a taste of life in the woods. Thank you for the great post.