Updated July 29, 2015
by Mario D. Vaden
Information here should prove one of the best online representations for what to anticipate, visiting Coast Redwoods. Some folks enjoy reading here at night from their motel room during aredwood vacation, and a few from other countries browse monthly. The most Essential topics are noted in the menu, including must-see, lodging, park visitor centers and hiking info. Most of the largest redwoods are undisclosed, but parks will share a few like Boyscout Redwood, and giants in the menu like #14 and #15, listed under extra-ordinary. In 2014, a new page was added about our recent largest coast redwood discoveries. Altogether, over 150 pages are provided, aside from the photo albums.
Every image should enlarge or lead to information. There are pages about 20 or more of the largest Coast Redwoods plus some of the tallest. I also post on Facebook and the BLOG. People may increase their allotted vacation time after they learn how much there is to find in the Coast Redwood forest.
Photo above: Stout Grove in Jedediah Smith park. Photo below: M. D. Vaden at Humboldt Redwoods park by Rockefeller redwood. Photo right: Woman by a giant in Redwood National Park. A few more photos like this for size and scale are at giant coast redwood.
This main redwood page is the only one optimized for mobile devices. Hopefully it does the job, because this single page took over 20 hrs. The other pages should be viewable on all screens but were designed for desktop or laptop. Virtually all content from before, remains. The page and menu cover mostly redwood parks of Northern California, lodging, camping, redwood hiking, visitor centers and redwood photography. Plus redwood forest explorers and researchers who climb the tallest species. There are reams of redwood photos. The bigger your screen, the better those will convey the redwoods.
My comments for redwood trails are in the menu under hiking, categorized under 5 park names. The menu also includes redwoodhikes.com. You can compare my trail reviews with that site.
There are nearly 300 Coast Redwood photos in the blog, album, other pages and the Redwood Mini Pics page. Refer to the menu.
Content began years ago with a single redwood page about a Grove of Titans and expanded into all these other pages; in case you are curious about the page URL. Over time, the single page grew into this collection of images and information.
The 15 largest Coast Redwoods (2013) are included because most visitors will never see them ... likewise Hyperion the tallest redwood, over 379 ft. (2013), discovered at Redwood National Park. Most are not destinations.
The 15 largest and others are in menu option extraordinary, along with other unusual Coast Redwoods.
The north parks are where coast redwoods grow over 360 ft. tall and over 27 ft. wide. The area spans Hiouchi, Crescent City, Klamath, Orick, Arcata, Eureka, Fortuna and Meyers Flat. There are 5 Coast Redwood parks with old growth and trails.The redwoods up there grow almost 100 ft. taller, and larger than places like Muir Woods.
Four parks account for 133,000 acres. Those are Redwood National Park plus Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park and Del Norte Coast Redwoods State Park: managed as Redwood National and State Parks. About 30 minutes south of Eureka is Humboldt Redwoods State Park with over 50,000 acres and Rockefeller Forest. That park has its own visitor center.
90% of folks should find what they are looking for here or a good lead about coast redwood travel. Photos include albino redwood, Jedediah Smith redwoods, Rockefeller Forest, Avenue of the Giants, Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, Del Norte Coast Redwoods, and Redwood National Park, lagoons, animals and plants.
The emphasis remains on Coast Redwoods, but with variety. A few images from local communities were added.
There are 8 coast redwoods over 370 feet tall (2013). 4 are in Redwood National Park and 4 are in Humboldt Redwoods State Park. Visitor centers will not provide maps but can direct to redwoods over 300 feet tall: Bull Creek Flats, Howland Hill Rd., Redwood National Park.
The largest Coast Redwood is so big that less than a dozen Giant Sequoia of the Sierra Nevada surpass its volume. Several are wider than General Sherman. But most biggest Coast Redwoods are not landmarked like Sequoias. With patience,
Each park has its own character. Jedediah Smith and Prairie Creek seem more dense. Much of Del Norte redwood park is elevated. Redwood National has a Wilderness feel to it. Much of Humboldt redwoods is more open.
www.curlyredwoodlodge.com (707) 464 - 2137 @ 701 Hy. 101 S. Crescent City, CA. Visit site for info.. 8 / 14
The Redwood Coast reputation is not merely tall and giant Coast Redwoods. It has beaches, rivers, lagoons, prairies, harbors, lighthouses, trails and forests. I made an effort to show this in the photo album and pages. There is horseback riding, kayaaking, fishing, marathons, festivals, kenetic sculpture contest, breweries and the Sea Cruise auto show yearly in Crescent City.
If you are looking for variety, the redwood coast will offer it. Links for researcher Dr. Sillett Canopy Albums | HSU and explorer Michael Taylor are provided. Taylor may be revamping. Sillett has a lot of interesting canopy photos taken in the tops.
Note : I'm not a redwood guide ... but have met a few folks for friendly hiking, photography and exploring in the coast redwoods.
Most small clckable Redwood Mini Photos were moved to their own page.
Use the top menu for my redwood trail reviews, official park maps and visitor center contact. My reviews are listed under Jedediah Smith, Del Norte Redwoods, Prairie Creek, Redwood National and Humboldt Redwoods State Parks. They are in the maps and hiking option.
Another excellent redwood trail website is provided from the menu, called redwoodhikes.com. Our reviews are not identical. Read both and compare.
redwoodhikes.com may whack a rating for traffic sound more than I do. My emphasis is different. I think both of our sites combined will offer you more for your trip. I recall seeing redwoodwoodhikes.com maps at the parks visitor center racks. Take a look, those redwood trail maps are well worth the purchase.
To avoid re-inventing the wheel, I limit the repetitive, adding content when I feel the trail should be described differently with added emphasis.
redwoodhikes.com is worth 5 stars for redwood hiking destinations, photos, trail ratings, detailed maps and more. See the 2nd menu next to the hiking heading. I refer to that site for my own adventures.
The image to the right shows part of Boy Scout in Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park. Select image to enlarge. The trailhead is next to Howland Hill Rd. Sometimes the gates are locked for maintenance, but the road is usually open.
If you need a small "shot in the arm" but can't go far beyond San Francisco, Muir Woods National Monument and Coast Redwoods is an option in Marin County. Compared to the north parks, SF area is more like a psuedo-northern California, but the small park 12 miles north of San Fran has 554 acres with 240 acres of old growth. For comparison, that's about 1% the size of Humboldt Redwoods State Park south of Eureka.
For those familiiar with the the Pacific NW, Muir Woods is about 10% the size of Forest Park on Portland's west side.
Muir Woods' tallest redwood is under 270 ft. tall, whereas Humboldt and Del Norte's tallest are over 370 ft.
If redwoodhikes.com actually used their "serenity scale" to rank Muir Woods for hiking, it could end up as just 1/2 star some days ... let me quote the park's July site alert to clarify:
"Take the Muir Woods Shuttle. Weekends are the busiest time for Muir Woods. Parking limited. Muir Woods is experiencing high numbers of visitors.
Traffic and unsafe parking behaviors are adding stress to visitors and residents. Expect delays on Hwy 1 as people drive to and from Muir Woods and local beaches."
Again, Muir Woods is merely a shot in the arm ... unless you find the stress ... compared to Redwood National and State Parks to the north. In Humboldt and Del Norte, it's easy to find a peaceful trail all year. Winter feels almost Wilderness-like in the far north. Maybe Muir Woods could be compared to pharmaceutical commercials with disclaimer warnings, and Redwood National and State Parks compared to natural food stores
After many redwood trips, there is a suggestion I offer to travelers from afar ... consider lodging reservations rather than camping to get more out of your adventure to cover the most ground. It buys time, not just a room. Its your choice. But if time is limited, you can skip setup, drying tents and waiting for showers.
Coast redwoods provide hikes and drives. Expect park staff & rangers to be helpful: they have been for me. The rangers and staff at the redwood visitor centers, collectively, are indispensable. Keep in mind that north California has the best places to see redwoods. Oregon has just a little for old growth redwoods and trails.
My time in the redwoods is hiking, camping, photography and exploring. The redwoods are an outdoor museum which led to many interesting conversations, new friends from around the world, and new height records. A recreation overlapping my work and education. Redwoods can also increase an awe of God's work
The biggest list of giant and tallest coast redwoods discovered over the years came from two men who searched for decades: Chris Atkins and Michael Taylor. They explored alone and with others. See: Chris Atkins and Michael Taylor.
2008 to 2015 provided opportunities to explore with Michael Taylor, Chris Atkins, Dr. Robert Van Pelt and Dr. Steve Sillett, in Redwood National and State Parks. The days were vigorous, refreshing and memorable. Part time, over 2 years, there was opportunity to help locate and measure tall redwoods related to LIDAR.
Taylor is an interesting fellow. He is a mechanical engineer who is expert with species ID and forests. And an appreciable understanding of algebra and trigonometry. He has an appreciation for gadgets and drones. In 2011, Michael became the California coordinator to verify nominations for biggest of each species.
In June 2011, Michael and I explored together and with Chris Atkins, discovering tallest live-top Douglas Fir and several tallest known Pines. We searched Southern Oregon, the Sierra Nevada and Red Buttes Wilderness.
In 2014, Chris Atkins and I, found new largest known among Coast Redwood for trunk size and girth.
See Discovery in the menu to read more about what was found.
Here are some restaurant & motels. for dining and lodging in Humboldt and Del Norte counties of Northern California.
Most are are clean, affordable and comfortable options.
One motel is in Grants Pass.
Curly Redwood Lodge CRESCENT CITY on Highway 101. Near food & shopping. 5 minutes from Redwood park.Huge rooms. This is the one I stay at most often. Several of my photo prints are in the main lobby.
The covered parking of the Curly Redwood Lodge is a treat when there is fog or rain. There is a restaurant directly across the street, and a couple more just a few minutes walk to the north.
Arcata Stay ARCATA. ,,, Upscale Arcata California Lodging accommodations. The only Lodging Network in Arcata with an Excellence Rating by Tripadvisor. The 8 Stays are walking distance to Humboldt State University and downtown.
Discovery Inn EUREKA. First stay at this motel was 2012. Comparable value to Motel 6 nearby. Its a coin toss. Clean room and bath. Fridge and WIFI. Convenient location. On Broadway / Highway 101
Bayview Motel EUREKA. Not a budget motel. On hill overlooking the town and bay. First stay was with two other explorers. We got a 2 Queen Suite & adjoining single King. Nice balcony on 2nd floor
Redwood Hyperion Motel GRANTS PASS, Oregon. If you need a place close to I-5. An extra stepping stone to to Jedediah Smith redwoods if you are too tired for 2 extra road hours to Crescent City
The lobby has snacks, beverage coolers, coffee most of the day and a computer for internet browsing. A new Hyperion Suites addition named after the tallest redwood. Swimming and nice landscaping
Humboldt Redwoods Inn GARBERVILLE. Liked the convenience of this motel right at the turn around for downtown, and close proximity to restaurants, grocery and fuel. South end of town.
Historic Hiouchi Cafe HIOUCHI / CRESCENT CITY. Located in the quant community of Hiouchi, almost adjacent to Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park and Smith River. Along redwood highway 199.
More motels, inns, lodging and restaurants continued > Redwood Vacation Lodging
Redwood National and State Parks visitors centers are perfect for specific questions like What dates are camping reservations available? How do I get a camping permit for Redwood National Park? Is Howland Hill Road open? Map to Fern Canyon?
Humboldt Redwoods State Park ... this park's camping and hiking is managed separately from RNSP above. Humbold Redwoods State Park info can be found at ...
Here's where I'm at on Photography Workshops ...
Down the road, I hope to offer workshops in the Coast Redwoods, but presently am not very strong technically. My strength leans toward composition and picking location for time of day or weather. Fair to say though ... I looked at workshop pages of some photographers related to Coast redwoods and I would pick my photos over half of what I see.
If photographers contact me with a request for help getting around in the redwoods for photography, I would entertain the idea, maybe even deal with the permit matter. There are creative alternatives too. If you are adept and need comfort and reliability of photographng with someone who knows the lay of the land, drop a note and maybe we can arrange something. If you are a beginner needing technical help. I won't be the sharpest tool in the drawer; but I am not the dullest tool either.
To photographers, especially professionals ... the parks require permits for some photography. If you call the visitor center at Crescent City or the permit coordinator there, they can clarify. But here's a few things I gathered:
If your equipment is compact like a camera and tripod and backpack, no permit should be required for landscape photography and redwoods, creeks, etc.. If you plan help from a model for commercial use, that may need a permit. Stands, lights and reflectors may be commercial photography from their point of view. Photography workshops need a permit. and with that insurance. But a lot of landscape and scenic photography does not require a permit, even if you plan to sell the prints.
A group of friends or photographers gettting together with cameras and tripods should not need a permit. And I don't think rules prohibit donations outside parks following recreational photography.
My own work is a combination of photoraphy and artistic. Ansel Adams did likewise, but with film camera and darkroom. My work is digital camera and computer. I want to emphasize that my images displayed are not what the camera captured, but the potential from what was captured.
Wish you well on your photography adventures,
IMO ... the wet season, October - June, is best for redwood photography:
North California and Redwoods Virtual Photography PIck a 360 degree tour
Images by Lowell Cottle Redwoods, birds and more.
North Coast Photos with Redwoods North Coast
Redwood Image Archaeology Redwood Post Card and Image Archive.
Dr. Van Pelt the Artist. Scientist, and author of Forest Giants of the Pacific Coast.
Redwood Education Guide Nearly 100 pages. For those who want to learn about coast redwood community and help others.
Provides human history of coast redwood region, science to coast redwood ecosystem, how to conduct a field trip to a redwood park, lessons for a park visit.
Humboldt Redwoods Interpretive Along the Eel River, Humboldt Redwoods State Park has over 53,000 acres, old-growth redwoods. 250 camp sites, 100 miles of hiking, biking, riding trails
Redwood Parks Association Established to assist California State Parks. Educational & Interpretive.
The Redwood Park Association merged with North Coast Redwood Interpretive Association. Both have a history funding interpretive staff, events, exhibits, signs, and publications
Redwood Profile by Flower Essence Society. Coast Redwood is Sequoia sempervirens
Highway 199 ~ Redwood Highway Check out the Redwood Information and Map option too. Hy 199 is the main travel corridor between Redwood National Park and Crater Lake National Par
Sequoia sempervirens And informative page on Coast Redwoods with info and photos
Different, but related, see Archangel Archive Propagate. They propagate Redwoods
M. D. Vaden & Redwoods Time in the Coast Redwoods with Mario Vaden ... Exploring and Photography ... Availability ...
Redwood Adventures REDWOOD ADVENTURES has tours, hiking, more. Orick. Family vacation, romantic holiday, wedding. retreats. Full hospitality to visitors of Redwood parks. They know how to cook
Exploring with M. D. Vaden - Exploring as time permits. Available to those who have a huge appreciation for coast redwoods. These are basically personal get-togethers
The Redwood Coast Nature Guide Jenny Hanson, naturalist and nature guide for the Redwood Coast. Guided trips for individuals, families, and groups, including people with physical limitations.
Local naturalist services to bus tours, conventions and large groups. Based in Eureka. Services from Humboldt Redwoods State Park in the south to Jedediah Smith State Park and Crescent City in the north
Custom Ceramic Murals CERAMIC MURALS & TOUR. See link for more info. Look for Public Murals. This custom artwork is available for public viewing throughout parts of Crescent City.
FYI - the Guide site www.gilbertredwoodexcursions.com is inactive
But Redwood Ed as he's called, is still out and about,. His site www.redwood-ed.com is operational
Burl n' Drift 28101 Avenue of the Giants. Family owned and operated since 1967. Quality Redwood Souvenirs .... one of the best redwood gift shops
A the Ancient Redwoods RV Park and home of the Hollow Log Truck When you park, look for the Immortal Redwood
Redwoods RV Resort RV, tent and cabin camping under soaring Sitka Spruce, Douglas fir and Coast Redwoods.
KOA Redwoods Campground - Crescent City, California. 17 forested acres
Ancient Redwoods RV Park Hollow Log Truck home. Redcrest. Near Founders grove. Mile north of Redcrest, California, on the world famous Avenue of the Giants
Also near Rockefeller Forest and Humboldt Redwoods State Park Visitor Center
Riverwalk RV Park Fortuna. Campground by the Eel River. Immaculate. Cabins, RV and Tent camping.
M. D. Vaden Cargo Trailer Conversion One version of cargo trailer camping. A growing trend in do-it-yourself camping
Drive Through Redwoods Page about the 3 Drive Through Redwoods: Chandelier, Shrine and Tour-Thru
Drive Through Redwood Leggett Chandelier drive-thru redwood. Gift shop. Dawn to dusk. Best looking of the 3 drive-though.
Drive Through Redwoods Information USDA & Forest Service pages about the drive through redwoods.