Monday, December 26, 2011

Prairie Creek Redwoods

I drove up to Redwood National Park during my Christmas weekend since I could not go home this year. It was a different way to spend the holidays, I was a little apprehensive spending Christmas alone, but it was a gift nonetheless. I was not going to have a three day weekend for some time to come, so I wanted to take advantage of it. Prairie Creek is a place I hope to return to, a pleasant, pleasant surprise. I had no itinerary or plan, other than to drive north and see some Redwoods. Let me just say this is Forest with a capital F! Never have I seen a forest like this, and I guess nothing will ever be as grand from this point on. I was only to catch a small glimpse of it, due to time. I took a short hike Christmas eve and was literally swallowed by the forest. It seemed eternal if I didn't know any better. The woods were so thick, I couldn't imagine a bushwhack would even be possible, although some people do it. It felt like an enormous treasure chest, just waited to be discovered.

While hiking, I felt like a ruined man. Completely being ripped apart by the seems. So much to discover, so much to learn, so much to do, so many people to spend time with, so little time. To say it was all euphoria would be false. As enchanting as these forests are, my mood often becomes very gloomy in them. I was amazed how quickly light escaped. One moment, I'm looking at mushrooms and straining my neck to see the tops of the redwood giants, the next I'm hustling back towards my campsite cursing my curiosity for turning around too late. I arrived at camp after dark, relieved I did not get lost. $35.00 dollars a night to camp in a California State Park. At least give the poor the campgrounds for God's sake. Who can afford to camp for $35.00 a night?

I didn't bother setting up a tent and chose to sleep in my car instead. It's roomy enough where I can spread out. I didn't want to deal with a soaked tent in the morning. It was so dark that I fell asleep at 7:00pm. I couldn't believe it when I woke up at 9:00am on Christmas morning, it still seemed dark. Half the day was already gone!


  1. Thirty-five dollars for a tent spot seems kind of outrageous. Big trees, though. I recall having read about Prairie Creek being one of those big "Save the Redwoods" battles, back in the 1960s. Did not know there were elk there.

  2. Huh, I'll have to look into that. There were quite a few elk herds in the area. I believe they are dubbed the Roosevelt elk, or something like that.