Redwoods, Part 4: Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park
Located to the north of the national park, the Jedediah Smith State Park redwood forests have a similar feel to the coastal groves of Prairie Creek though these forests lay further inland and do have more variety. To access the trails I took the one lane Howland Hill Road through the center of the park and was afforded with some of the most spectacular views I have ever seen from the driver’s seat. Even though you’re driving, you feel completely isolated on this road, dwarfed by the massive trees that your car passes between; it was almost a shock when I came across another car after twenty minutes.
Boy Scout Trail is a 5.2 mile out and back stroll through the various redwood environments in the forest, from exclusively ancient tree groves to mixed deciduous woods to redwoods surrounded by an understory of thick ferns. The trail leads you past some incredibly large trees and ends at a small waterfall and the huge Boy Scout Tree, the latter of which I confirmed later since I did not actually notice which tree was Boy Scout Tree. Oops. Anyway, it was an incredibly beautiful and peaceful hike.
After lunch I then wandered over to the highly accessible Stout Memorial Grove, with its impossibly tall trees punctuated by bright sunlight. The wide, flat path and the relatively low brush give this section a groomed appearance, almost like a garden.