For a change of pace, we decided to do a couple of hikes in the state and federal redwood parks in Northern California. Timing-wise, now is sort of a sweet spot between the crowded summer tourist season and the onset (hopefully) of the rainy season. On the way to Crescent City, California, we stopped at Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park to hike the Boy Scout Tree Trail to that tree and to Fern Falls. This is Hike #97 in Sullivan’s Oregon Coast & Coast Range hiking and travel guide (Third Edition, 2014).
This hike is an easy stroll on a wide, well-graded trail,
through some very, very large trees – most still upright,
and some not.
The Boy Scout Tree itself is actually two trees that grew together ages ago, forming a monster 20 feet or so in diameter! Oddly – despite the name of the trail and the otherwise good state park signage – there’s no official sign directing you to the tree, which sits about 50 feet above the trail. There is a sign for the tree itself – about 20 feet above the ground!
About 0.5 miles beyond the Boy Scout Tree lies Fern Falls, which after four years of drought and this late in the season, isn’t much to look at.
We were getting neck strain from looking UP at the trees, so we took to occasionally looking for the small stuff on the forest floor,
some of which was looking back at us.
All told, a short (5.8 miles roundtrip; 600 feet of elevation gain) very pleasant way to break-up our drive to the coast.