Redwood Scenic Drive California
Most people think of white-sanded beaches, sun-tanned bodies, and Tex-Mex when they think of California.
But the California stereotypes miss out on some of the most spectacular scenery in Northern California (and America), through the Redwoods Coast drives.
At the north of California in Humboldt County, you get to see some of the tallest trees in the world, beautiful sandy beaches with ruggard cliff faces, and fog filled coast line.
Almost half of the remaining old growth redwood trees are in the Redwood State and National Parks in Humboldt County. The Redwoods park system is made up of the Prairie Creek Redwoods Del Norte Coast Redwoods & Jebediah Smith Redwoods parks, where you can see giant redwoods five times taller than the Statue of Liberty.
To see the redwoods, you take the coastal Highway 101 drive, which takes you to all of the parks in this area. The Jebediah Smith Redwoods park is just slightly east on Highway 99.
Though we drove along the highway and stopped off to see various parks and trails, you can also camp in the area (make sure to bring cash with you, as many camping parks do not take cards and there are no bank machines nearby). Aside from walks and hikes, there are over 200 miles of trails where you can also bike and horse ride.
For the botanical nerds out there, here are some facts about redwoods:
- The three redwood subfamily genera are: Sequoia and Sequoiadendron of California and Oregon, USA; and Metasequoia in China. The Chinese metasequioa aren’t giant trees like the sequoia and sequoiadendron.
- The world’s tallest tree at 379.1 feet is a Sequoia sempervirens redwood, discovered in 2006. It’s called Hyperion, and it’s in an undisclosed location of Redwoods National Park.
- Redwood trees can live to be 275 years old (or Wikipedia suggests 1,000 years, but the 275years is what’s quoted on the redwood national parks website), and can grow over 375 feet tall.
- The Redwoods are an endangered species due to habitat losses from fire ecology suppression, logging, and air pollution.
- The first Sequoioideae, Sequoia jeholensis, was discovered in Jurassic deposits.
Here are photos from our recent journey along Highway 101 through the redwoods. We hope you enjoy them. If it’s a trip you can manage, we do suggest you do this for yourself. As the artist John Steinbeck mentioned, the enormity of the redwoods is one that is not easily transferred into words or images!