Wednesday, May 23 - We headed North on CA-101 this morning to Klamath, CA, and the Trees of Mystery. This is a tourist stop about 16-miles south of Crescent City, CA. When you arrive, you are greeted by Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue OX. Paul is over 50-feet tall and Babe is about 35-feet tall.
There is a Sky Trail that consists of a gondola ride high among the tops of the redwood trees providing stunning views of the trees from a different angle. There is also a trail you can take to view some Redwood carvings and the towering trees. All this for $15 per person. We choose not to enjoy the ride or trail at this time.
In the rear of the Gift Store is an amazing Native American museum called End of the Trail that makes this stop worthwhile. We spent quite a bit of time in there and really enjoyed it. It houses one of the greatest privately-owned collections in the world of Native American artifacts. It includes, tools clothing, ceremonial artifacts, weapons, eating utensils, and much more. But most importantly, there is a huge collection of baskets that Marsha was delighted to view.
The Redwood National and State Park is visited by driving the Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway. An eight-mile stretch of the original Redwood Highway that provides one of the park's most scenic drives through old-growth redwoods. This area is simply stuffed with redwoods. Thousands upon thousands of them. We stopped and hiked several of the many trails, most of the time without seeing another soul.
It amazed us how different this area was compared to the Avenue of the Giants. In talking with a Ranger, she explained that these are the two ecological extremes for these trees. Here in Redwood National Park the environment is wetter, much like a rain-forest. The ground is covered with ferns, clover, moss, and other wet environment ground cover. The trees are a little shorter but have numerous off-shoots growing from their root system. In the Avenue of the Giants forest, the trees grow straighter, a little taller and exist in a dryer forest type environment. This difference was very obvious and quite interesting.
Another point of interest is that this area of the Redwood National Park was used to film the movie Jurassic Park. A movie about dinosaurs being recreated from DNA and living in a similar forested park. You could easily imagine dinosaurs roaming through this forest. It also the area where Big Foot is known to roam.....hmmmmm!
A highlight of our visit was the viewing of the Elk herd. These huge moose like creatures are seen grazing in the meadows, fields and even in people's yards. We were able to get a pretty close view of a small herd of about 20 Elk. A little scary getting this close to these wild animals. Signs are everywhere warning you of the danger of getting too close. What wonderful animals!
We agreed that the Redwood National Park was a wonderful way to view these magnificent Redwood trees. The trails and interpretive centers in the National Park allowed us to enjoy these trees more completely than our drive through the Avenue of the Giants. But the ecological comparison make both a “must see” in our book!
Answer to the photo question…They are combs that the Native Americans used for their hair. Very interesting.
Thanks for stopping by. Hope to see y'all back real soon. Have a great day!