Thursday, October 22, 2015

Fern Canyon, 

in Praire Creek Redwoods State Park  Klamath CA

Oct. 2015, Fern Canyon is how I imagine a rainforest to be. After a 10 mile drive on a narrow dirt road, thru Redwoods and a little creek, we arrived at the trail head. The drive itself was beautiful, Fern Canyon the frosting on the cake.  
A mile trail thru the canyon with a creek at the bottom. 80 ft high walls covered with at least 5 different kinds of ferns. Huge overhanging trees on top the ridge. Water dripping down from the hanging gardens and the sound of trickling water, all make for a glorious hike.

Was wishing I had my mudders on. After several creek crossings, most over logs or wobbly branches strewn across the trickling water, I ended up with wet feet as did many  other hikers we met. 

Tom shows off his skills and keeps his feet dry.

 It was like walking in a terrarium.
Interesting note, a part of Jurassic Park 2 was filmed here. 

A Banana Slug, easy to see how they get their name. They can grow up to 9”.
All for now. Stay tuned for more of the Redwoods to follow. 

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Lassen Volcanic National Park, CA.

 Aug/2015 - This park was a hidden gem for us, we saw it on the map in route to Oregon and decided to check it out, so glad we did. We ended up camping here for several days, there was much to see and so many hiking trails. Our campground was on this little Lake Manzanita, there was a nice trail around the lake. We watched a few sunsets from this point. The highest mountain in the background is Lassen Peak which last erupted in 1917. We hiked to the top, which was a challenging climb for me but well worth it with beautiful views, we were surprised to find small patches of snow on the top, although it was very windy and cold up there.

Lassen reminded us of a little "Yellowstone". We walked the boardwalks over this hydrothermal area. Warnings to stay on the walkway explain the surface may look solid but in places it's a thin crust with boiling acidic water underneath. I liked the colors in the landscape. 
There have been many eruptions in the park and surrounding area. We climbed another volcano, Cinder Cone, a type of eruption where the top and inside blew out. It was a steep climb, all on loose cinder, another good workout worth the effort. I've never seen anything like it. Note the little pine tree growing on the top of this volcano, others on the left also making a come back. There's a trail that circles the top (which we did) but we were exhausted and didn't take the trail down into the center. 

View from the top of Cinder Cone over the back side. We were blown away when we looked over the back side and saw this view of the lava and cinder beds. It was like being in a watercolor painting. 

Heading down Cinder Cone, much easier than going up. 

At the bottom looking back at Cinder Cone, I feel a sense of accomplishment. 
(You can see part of the trail.) 

Friday, October 2, 2015

Oregon, Port Orford - September 2015

Oregon travels, south to north:
Our son asked if the beaches are crowded...I added this photo for him and his wife, they're accustomed to busy New England beaches. Those are our tracks, we walk a beach somewhere everyday and never tire of it because they're all different. 
Regarding our blog...I’ve fallen behind, will blame some on lack of internet. The Oregon State Parks on the coast have sparse internet/cell service. Other than that little inconvenience, the State Parks are very nice with beautiful ocean beach locations. Our trip thru Oregon started in the south central part of the state, we meandered north thru Bend and up the middle to the The Dallas on the Columbia River, the river divides the states of Oregon and Washington, the area known as the Columbia Gorge. The Lewis and Clark expedition followed the Columbia river to the coast (the historic Lewis and Clark Trail). Once we reached the NW corner of Oregon, we followed the coast north to south. As I write, we’re in Port Orford, near the southern border. This is where I’ll continue our blog and in time will back track on some of the highlights from earlier travels. 

Port Orford is the kind of little town we’re drawn to, not all touristy. The fishing industry appears to be the main source of employment. Interesting note, some of the fish from this little port are shipped out alive to restaurants. They’re placed in large water filled containers for shipping. I think the most fascinating thing about Port Orford is the dock itself, it’s called a dolly dock and is one of only 2 in the U.S. Since the town’s open-water harbor isn’t protected from the crashing sea swells, boats in the commercial fishing fleet are hoisted in and out of the harbor by a huge crane everyday, the boats are loaded on a trailer and kept safe up on the cement dock. It’s quite a sight to watch. 

Days End - Fishing boat being lifted up onto the dock.

 The hoist swings the boat over the dock.

This is a different boat but you can see it being loaded onto a trailer.

On our beach walk - Sea Anemones
Sea Anemones are considered to be the flower of the sea, they look like plants but are really meat eating animals. They attach to rocks in shallow water or tide pools, they wait for their food to swim by then sting it with their tentacles. (I like flowers of most any kind, it was a nice surprise to find these in a small pool on the beach.)

A little drive south of Port Orford on Hwy 101. 
Every beach, every view, every day, all different and all so amazingly beautiful.

Another spectacular view, looking towards Port Orford.