Smith River California to Crescent City California ~ Ocean Pictures ~ Redwoods Forest
Sunset in Smith River, California
Ship Ashore Resort
This was our destination to rest our heads after our jet boat ride on the Rogue River in Grants Pass, Oregon. This next leg of my mother's, niece's and my trip would have us seeing some of northern California at Smith River, California and down to Crescent City, California where we would take in additional sites like the majestic redwoods forest. Ocean pics were taken as well as forested ones.
Come along and join us on this leg of our journey!
It took much longer than anticipated to drive from Grants Pass to Smith River because of many curves in the road and speeds of only 25 miles per hour. Because of having reservations we pushed on and shortly after arriving enjoyed a magnificent sunset over the Pacific ocean.
The Ship Ashore Resort in Smith River is situated overlooking the water, so we had a terrific and unobstructed view of the setting sun.
This Ship Ashore Resort has a prime spot with regard to the Smith River and Pacific Ocean. The views are terrific and I made use of my camera to record the brilliant sunset over the water.
Seagulls are in abundance and the waitress at the restaurant invited us to take the remaining bread from the basket that was served at our table during dinner to feed the seagulls that perched on our balcony railing.
Obviously the seagulls are used to being regaled with extra bread like this!
Beautiful sunset in Smith River, California
We paid the price for this largess!
The next morning at the crack of dawn we had noisy and boisterous seagulls squawking and begging for another helping of bread.
No need for an alarm clock!!!
My niece had fun obliging the seagull's desires. They kept us entertained with their antics until we needed to get on with our planned activities for the day.
Seagulls eating out of our hands
Location of Ship Ashore Resort
Smith River, northern California
Smith River California
Most all of our two week vacation that year was spent in Oregon.
Smith River is a very small unincorporated town in the very northwestern tip of California just below the State of Oregon.
The primary reason that we came to this area was because my mother wanted to see some of the famous tall redwood trees and experience their grandeur in person. Thus it was worked into our sightseeing plans.
It would be the first time for my niece to see them as well.
Battery Point Lighthouse
Crescent City California
We headed south to Crescent City, California which is only 12 miles or so ( 19 km ) from Smith River.
After an easy drive our first stop was to visit the Battery Point Lighthouse.
Normally one can walk right up to it but when the tide rolls in the path is obliterated.
Unfortunately for us, it was high tide so we could only view it from a distance.
It was one of the first lighthouses built along the California coast so has great historical significance.
Had we been able to walk over to it, we could have toured the interior and have seen period furnishings.
As it was, we had to just look at it from a distance.
Battery Point Lighthouse in background
Crescent City, California Beach
Getting ocean pictures of this rugged coastline in northern California is easy.
Crescent City juts out into the Pacific and it makes for some pretty spectacular scenery.
That location has also caused problems for the local residents.
Tsunami prone, this part of the United States has been hit with large damaging ocean waves causing great destruction and even deaths.
As recent as the devastating 9.0 earthquake in Japan on March 11, 2011, damage was done to property and a death was reported as well when about 8 feet of water came crashing ashore.
Crescent City, California shoreline
Crescent City Beautiful Places
It is easy to see from the map below how Crescent City juts out into the ocean making it more vulnerable to tsunami's than other areas.
Crescent City, California
Sea Lions at Crescent City California
A walk among the Giants
Crescent City is the gateway to some of the giant redwood trees of California.
My mother, niece and I found a picnic table in the Lady Bird Johnson Grove and enjoyed a lunch of some Indian style smoked salmon jerky that we had purchased locally to add to our other more typical picnic offerings.
We had some interested blue jays that were willing to gather any crumbs left behind.
It was then time to see and marvel at the spectacular redwood trees.
Redwoods: The Tallest Trees
Redwood National Park
Giant Redwood trees California
The Lady Bird Johnson Grove is a part of the National Park.
In addition to the Redwood National Park, there are a number of State Parks which have these coastal redwoods growing in various places along the California coastline.
These redwoods which are the tallest living things on our planet...some thousands of years old!...have amazingly shallow roots. Many are no more than about 10 feet in depth but do spread out for great distances.
Most of the mature trees are anywhere between 300 to 350 feet tall!
They have massive trunks and can survive fires that have occurred over the centuries. In fact, hollowed out trunks of trees that are still alive have been used for shelter for both people and animals.
Redwood National Park photo
Scenery in Redwoods National Park
The trees we were viewing, the coastal redwoods ( sequoia sempervivens ) are not to be confused with the giant sequoias ( sequoiadendron giganteum ) that grow in the Sierra Nevada Mountain range in Eastern California. The latter while not necessarily as tall, grow even wider girths and are truly massive trees. In the past, cars were allowed to drive through the middle of these hollowed out trees.
Those were the trees that my mother was actually thinking of and wanting to see because of hearing about them from her parents who had traveled and experienced them many years prior. But she mistakenly said redwoods instead of sequoias when I was planning the trip.
Not to worry!
She was amazed and loved what she saw while walking through the Redwood National Park.
But then who wouldn't be awed! It certainly makes one feel insignificant and small when realizing that these trees were here before Christ and others walked the earth!
Differences and similarities between Redwood and Sequoia Trees...
Redwoods & Sequoias
Which tend to be taller?
Which are larger overall in mass?
Grow along the Calif. coast?
Grow in the Sierra Nevada Mtn.'s of California?
Have been harvested for lumber?
Resistant to fire and insects?
Some of them protected in National Parks?
Can live up to several thousand of years old?
Scenic Northern California Redwoods and large elk herd
Look at the size of that redwood tree!
Hope that you learned a bit about this most northwestern tip of California from Smith River to Crescent City if you were unfamiliar with it. The coastline and Battery Point Lighthouse is interesting and the Redwood National Park is magnificent. Getting to see all of this made for one very special day of our vacation trip!
Redwood National Park
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© 2011 Peggy Woods
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