This might just prove to be too much of a good thing (Mae West to the contrary); here, two weeks
of photographs from Sinkyone Wilderness State Park and the Redwood National and State Parks.
The opening of this road trip, after a brief stop in San Francisco to visit with my sister and watch a (free!)
Lucinda Williams concert, was Sinkyone Wilderness State Park. It's a few hours north of San Francisco,
along what is sometimes referred to as "The Lost Coast", where the coast range mountains are so steep
and rugged that planners were forced to route the roads inland. Except for two spurs down to the coast
to the "town" of Shelter Cove and Sinkyone (sin'-kyohn), there are about fifty miles of wilderness coast.
In 1998, my dad and I backpacked the northern section of the lost coast, 24 miles from Petrolia to Shelter
Cove. This time I wasn't so ambitious; I just wanted to check it out and recon the possibility of a longer
through-hike. Maybe next summer. Here, the coastline looking north.
Sinkyone's quite pretty; the forests come down to a narrow strip of grasslands that terminate up against
100-foot bluffs that drop down into black-sand beaches...
Sometimes, with the right light, even the most mundane objects can be beautiful.
Breakers with illuminated surf spray at sunset.
This set of alders particularly drew my eye... repeatedly. I walked right past it to the environmental camp
site where I spent two nights. Their pale bark seemed almost white, even ghostly, in the evening twilight.
Here, one of the same alders the next morning. Sunbeams coming through the upper branches illuminate the last
traces of fog from the dawn.
After coming back out of Sinkyone at Briceland, I headed farther north up the 101. Stopped in at Humboldt Redwoods State
Park, did a run along one of the creeks, and headed on. Stopped in briefly at Northern Mountain Supply in Eureka, got a
burrito at the only Mexican place I've ever seen staffed by Vietnamese, drove on. Photographed sunset at Humboldt Lagoons,
but the best shots ended up too reminiscent of some of my earlier shots, notably Calligraphy Grasses. Stealth camped inside the park along the coastal road, caught a non-existant sunrise at High Bluffs Overlook, then headed down to Gold Bluffs Beach and Fern Canyon.
Upper Fern Canyon. Greenly resplendent, similar to the Hoh rainforest--but not quite that lush.
Clearing in a redwood forest. The central three trees are actually douglas firs (I think), growing up in the opening provided by a fallen redwood. Along the trillium falls trail.
Seastacks in twilight north of the mouth of the Klamath River. Stayed at a youth hostel just across 101 from this beach.
Redwoods along the Damnation Creek trail. Heavy fog makes for a very low-contrast photograph.
Sunset along Crescent Beach, in the northern portion of the park, only ten or twenty miles from the Oregon border. I can't quite explain how, but Crescent Beach had multiple sets of breakers pretty much continuously. I watched the waves roll in for about an hour, as the sun flirted with clouds on the western horizon.
Lichen-covered madrone in Six Rivers National Forest.
Redwood grove along the "Boy Scout Trail" along Howland Hill road.
Farther along the Boy Scout trail. Here, a burl six or eight feet off the ground supports a few ferns.
Sunset over Endert's Beach, just south of Crescent Beach.