During my four-day, 800-mile photo outing to the southern coast of Oregon
(south of Bandon
) in May 2012, I took about 2,000 pictures. After spending two nights in Gold Beach,
I continued south to Crescent City,
California, for the third night.
On the fourth and final day of my trip, I headed out early on U.S. Route 199
towards Grants Pass,
Oregon. One of my stops along the way was at the Stout Grove
which is part of California's Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park,
about nine miles northeast of Crescent City. A sign at the trailhead reads:
Stout Grove, a majestic example of an ancient coast redwood forest, is often considered to be the heart of Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park. In 1929, Mrs. Clara Stout donated this 44-acre grove to the Save-the Redwoods League
to save it from being logged and to memorialize her husband, lumber baron Frank D. Stout.
Today, land continues to be added to these northernmost parks through the efforts of the League.
A walk along this loop trail reveals colossal redwoods thriving in rich soil deposited during periodic flooding of the Smith River.
Here, waist-high sword ferns
carpet the forest floor and normally flared tree bases are covered in river soils. Flood waters inhibit the growth of understory
trees and plants seen in other groves, leaving the 300-foot redwoods as the main attraction.
I really liked it here — it was very peaceful and quite, like being in a European cathedral. And because I arrived fairly early, I pretty much had the place to myself. During my one hour of wandering around the grove I took 57 pictures, which I have whittled down to the best 27, in this, the seventh of numerous albums from my trip.