Redwood National Park is home to the world’s tallest and oldest trees. While we often refer to this area as Redwoods National Park, it is officially known as Redwood National and State Parks.
Redwood National and State Parks are unique, with federal and state lands managed jointly.
In the early 1900s, the state acquired lands with groves of trees in the area. The federal government also purchased lands to preserve these giants from logging and development. These lands were operated separately until 1994 when management was consolidated.
Visiting Redwood National Park
Located in Northern California, Redwood National and State Parks cover a lot of ground. These protected lands encompass over 130,000 acres.
It stretches from around Cresent City, CA, in the north to Trinidad, CA, in the south. This distance is about 60 miles.
The park is known for its towering redwood trees. Some are over 300 feet tall and over 2,000 years old!
The Redwoods hug the California coastline in areas. It is an interesting experience to witness the fog as it rolls into the forest from the ocean. Specialized redwood tree needles catch moisture, supporting the trees and the entire ecosystem.
Enjoying scenic drives and exploring the diverse trails on foot or by bike are the primary activities in the Redwoods. And there are many areas of the park to see.
The Lady Bird Johnson Grove Trail is one of Redwoods National Park’s most famous areas. Guests can stroll through a grove of the old-growth redwood forest!
One of the popular drives in Redwoods is the Avenue of Giants. This 31-mile road parallels Highway 101 in Humbolt County. It is a spectacular drive giving meaning to the phrase “scenic route.” Along the way, there are several places to stop and explore.
While walking among the giants, you may notice a feeling of deja vu. Don’t worry, you aren’t crazy… you have been here before (sort of). If you’ve seen the movie Return of the Jedi, scenes on the Forest Moon of Endor were filmed here.
Redwood National and State Parks has 5 visitor centers. The largest is the Thomas H. Kuchel Visitor Center. This center is located near Orik, CA, a midway point in the park. It includes many interpretive exhibits, a park movie, and a gift shop.
The Redwoods offer more than just big trees. The park is also home to a diverse range of wildlife, including Roosevelt elk, black bears, and over 200 species of birds. We spotted several elk on our trip!
Redwoods National and State Parks offers four campgrounds, or visitors can stay in nearby towns. We stayed near the southern end of the park in McKinleyville. The Holiday Inn Express was the base for exploring the region.
We stayed in the Holiday Inn Express in McKinleyville as a base for exploring the Redwoods.
Overall, visiting Redwood National Park is an awe-inspiring experience that offers a unique opportunity to witness some of the world’s tallest and oldest trees. Whether you prefer hiking, camping, or simply enjoying the stunning scenery, Redwood National and State Parks provides an experience you’ll remember for a lifetime.
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