Magnificent! On my first trip to Northern California’s Redwood National Forest, could find no words to describe this magical world of towering redwood trees. Their size and power created a state of awe and silence. This is the place to find most of the giant redwood trees remaining in the United States, including trees that are several stories taller than the Statue of Liberty. Located along the Pacific Coast, this mist-laden forest produces the tallest trees in the world.
Just to demonstrate their massive size, they have three redwoods that you can actually drive your car through. This was a great experience, and hopped out to take a picture of my car inside Shrine Tree near Myers Flat in the Humboldt Redwoods State Park. A small fee is charged for driving through the tree as it was privately owned, but it was worth it. For safety sake, the tree is anchored with steel cables even though no movement has been noted. These drive thru trees were an early way to draw attention to the giant redwoods and attract tourists their way. Today the practice of cutting tunnels through new trees is basically frowned upon by environmentalists so the present tunnels are being cared for tenaciously. There is also a great little gift shop inside another redwood tree. Many gifts were handcarved items using the available redwood, which is very hard to carve as it splits easily. Purchased a six inch tall redwood bear while stopping there.
Nearby there was a fallen log that was wide enough to drive your car over. This log was cut in 1900 and weighed approximately a hundred tons with length of 40′ and width of 8 1/2′. Have to try all these things because the size of the trees is just so amazing. Another surprising thing is the beautiful scent of the forest. Again, you have to be there to fully understand. “Seeing is believing.”
Back to the Avenue of the Giants, stopped by Founders Grove with a 350′ tree. You look up and up , but never see the sky it seems. These redwoods grow upwards straight as an arrow and their bark at ground level is also exceptional. The road is hilly and windy but you really don’t mind as you have spectacular views on all sides and upward. The Dyerville Giant was 370′ when it fell, 200 feet taller than Niagara Falls. This Giant weighed over a million pounds. Overwhelming!
Without a doubt, in my travels this is the most breathtaking work of Mother Nature in the United States as words can not describe, not can pictures show, the feeling of standing amongst these giants. Return visit? Definitely!