Saturday, March 29, 2014

Henry Cowell and Santa Cruz beach

Traditional Saturday outing in Northern California-Santa Cruz beach and Redwoods, March 2014

We hadn't really been to the beach with Kahn yet, so we took a Saturday to do a very traditional day out.  First the beach, where we ate our sandwiches while listening to the screams from the boardwalk.

Crashing waves are lovely but it is just too cold for me to hang out for long.

So next we headed to Henry Cowell, which I knew had some of the most impressive redwoods.  But we ended up coming into a different entrance and got to see great new stuff as well.

There is a cool observation tower to climb.

 A great view of the Santa Cruz mountains

Then we started down a trail to get to the big redwoods that is mostly limestone.  What happens to limestone over time is that it falls apart into sand.  For all the trails I've been on in the area, this is the first I've seen like this.  There are fun patterns on the side walls

That turn into sand underfoot.

 This is a multi-use trail, so look out for horses and evidence of horses!

This is cathedral redwood grove, also something I haven't seen elsewhere.  Usually the redwoods fill in all the space to take up all the sun.  

It is hard to show just how tall the tree get, but I try!

we managed to find a the steepest part of the trail

and the most picturesque spot ever-I think I photographed this the first time we visited too.

I even managed to spot an actual plant that is on the guide.  This is Trillium and they were in bloom.

And you would think this is clover, but it is actually Redwood Sorrel.  Also in bloom-very different flowers from clover, even though I couldn't tell the greens apart.

We made it to the area of Redwood giants

You can go into the John Fremont tree.  The inside can easily hold 10 people but the entrance is small because the tree has been growing over the hole.

An aspirational redwood

And no walk int he woods is complete without fungus!

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