Go Hug a Tree!
Whenever I experience power in nature, it makes me feel small, insignificant, fleeting. I get this feeling watching rugged cliffs dropping into a pounding ocean; the ceaseless force of a raging waterfall; or the colorful kaleidoscope of a setting sun. The fortunate ones who live in northern California are provided with all of these wonders every day. To add a pinch of salt to my wound of jealousy, California throws in the redwoods - show off! Not surprising, the redwoods, in all their grandeur, make me feel infinitesimal. I’ll go out on a ‘limb’ and say you’ll feel the same when you see them. Such majesty is humbling. It reminds us we are not the center of the universe. If you ever have the chance, drive down the coast on Route 101. In fact, if you can swing it, try not to be the driver. Just south of Humboldt County, the road turns inland and you’ll enter redwood country. Just past Stafford you’ll have the choice of continuing on or hanging a left onto the Avenue of the Giants. Opting for this magical road instead of Route 101 will add about an hour to your trip. I guarantee it will be one of the most jaw-dropping hours of your life. It could (and should) take longer if you take advantage of all the pull-offs for photo ops. The Avenue slices through the forest floor, twisting and turning just like a good country road should. Experience this power but please remember that respect is paramount here – no carving, no littering, no fire. Enjoy and protect this ecosystem!