The Lost Coast

Trip Start Aug 04, 2008
1
17
90
Trip End Ongoing


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Flag of United States  , California
Thursday, August 21, 2008

I checked out the Redwood National Park this morning. I took about a 1 hour walk through one of the trails, and it was totally worth it. For the record, these are the biggest species of trees in the world, as well as some of the biggest specimens. They grow up to 350 feet tall (think a 35 story building), and some have been around more than 2000 years. The forest is quiet and shady, and always damp, though rain doesn't penetrate easily to the forest floor. The trees have in effect created their own weather. Birds and other wildlife seem to keep it down, in deference.

Then I headed south on 101 past Eureka. I took a right on a small road recommended by a guide I had, and that led to a ride that took me the rest of the day. The road was about the width of a big driveway and very rough, with lots of potholes. It was incredibly tight and winding, but it would through beautiful seaside hills and ranches - and no traffic. The road wasn't terrible but rough, and it gave me a good chance to test out the capabilities of the bike over harsh road surfaces. The bike did great! It smoothed out the potholes so I could concentrate on riding instead of holding on. I had worked hard to create that capability.

At one point I saw a gravel road heading toward the beach, so I took it. After about 2 miles it ended up in a campground at the beach, with a placard that said that this was the trailhead for the Lost Coast, one of the longest stretches of undeveloped coastline in the US. Here you could actually backpack along the coast and the Kings Range of low coastal mountains for days without seeing a house and only a few trailheads.

On the loop back, the road I was on dropped me right into another redwood forest, which I rode through in wonderment. Then onward to the south, to another cheap motel. I would have camped, but it was late and the weather was still iffy.
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