You may have heard stories as a child about the massive redwood trees in California and dreamt of seeing them in person one day. Humboldt Redwoods State Park is one of the world’s greatest wonders, because of the redwood tree’s size, resiliency, and unique ecosystem. Let’s learn more about the tallest trees in the world and what makes this park one that people flock to every year.
Where Is Humboldt Redwoods Forest?
To access the redwood trees in Humboldt County, we start from a stretch 450 miles from southern Oregon to about 150 miles south of San Francisco, with the largest concentrations of redwoods occurring in Humboldt County, California. Humboldt Redwoods State Park is California’s largest redwood state park and includes the 10,000-acre Rockefeller Forest, which according to VisitRedwoods.com, is the largest remaining contiguous old-growth coast redwood forest in the world.
The redwood tree has an average lifespan of 500-700 years. Some coastal redwoods can live to more than 2,000 years and grow to over 360 feet in height. To give some reference to how tall this is, consider the world’s tallest tree, which was discovered in 2006. It is named Hyperion and is 380 feet tall, which is nearly six stories taller than the Statue of Liberty.
What makes redwood trees able to grow so tall and last so long?
Redwood trees are naturally resistant to rot and decay and they really have no natural enemies. Their tannic acid makes them resistant to disease and insect infestation, and their thick bark makes them able to resist fire. Their federal protection status is also helpful. Today, over 160,000 acres of redwood forests are protected by federal, state, county and local parks on the Redwood Coast.
What is there to do at Humboldt Redwoods State Park?
In addition to the obvious marvel of the redwood trees, you can also access the Eel River and the 10,000-acre Rockefeller Forest. Take a trip to the Visitor Center near Weott and check out stunning displays of nature, wildlife and local history. There is no shortage of hiking trails at Humboldt Redwood State Park, with over 100 miles of trails, offering something for every age and ability. Some of the most popular hiking trails include Founder’s Grove Nature Loop Trail, Gould Grove Nature Trail, Drury-Chaney Loop Trail, Stephen’s Grove Loop Trail, and Rockefeller Loop Trail/Bull Creek Flats. Check out their website here for details on each specific trail and what each has to offer.
In addition to visiting Humboldt Redwood State Park, you can also visit neighboring attractions such as Redwood National Park and the Avenue of the Giants, which offers an excellent alternate route through southern Humboldt County.
How about driving through a redwood tree?
One of the most iconic trademarks of the American Road Trip is to drive through a fallen or dead tree. Humboldt County thankfully offers three unique opportunities to accomplish this bucket list item and they are all along Highway 101, also known as the Redwood Highway. The three trees to check out while in the area are Shrine Tree, Chandelier Tree, and Klamath Tree. Learn more here about how to access each location and their specific fees and rules.
Camping in the Humboldt Redwoods State Park
Imagine spending the night under the stars, protected by 1,000 year old giants hovering above you. It’s truly an experience that one would never forget. Humboldt Redwood State Park offers offer tent camping sites, RV sites, group and bicycle campsites. They also have backcountry camping (backpacking) as well as drive-in camping. Reservations are highly recommended, so find more information about the options here.
Hopefully this short guide to the Humboldt Redwood State Park has sparked a sense of wonder and adventure for your next visit to see the coastal redwoods in California. Sometimes we become numb to true wonder and beauty in the world, but this experience offers you a chance to reconnect with nature and truly take in the grandeur of it all. Whether it be driving through a fallen or dead tree, hiking, camping or just taking photos- the Humboldt Redwood State Park has a little something for everybody!
We here at Rocky Mountain Forest Products love redwood products. That being said, we would never stoop so low as to poorly source or redwood decking materials. All products that we provide are sustainably sourced! If you would like to learn more about our process, or purchase some redwood decking for your next project, give us a call!