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The forest went on forever

What quote am I vibing? "Our world was much larger then. The forest went on forever. We tree spirits nurtured the harmony of all living things, but our closest friends were humans. Then, as sometimes happens, the balance of nature shifted. Hexxus, the very spirit of destruction rose up from the bowels of the earth, and rained down his poison. The forest was nearly destroyed, many lives were lost and the humans fled in fear, never to return. Most believe they did not survive. It was only by calling up the magical powers of nature, that I was able to trap Hexxus inside an enchanted tree, and save FernGully." Magi Lune, from FernGully

Road Day: 43

Trails Hiked: Redwood National & State Parks. 7.2 miles. Elevation Change: unclear. Surface: packed down dirt. To include: Fern Canyon (1.1 miles), Parts of James Irvine Trail, and Clintonia Trail (3 miles.)

National Parks Visited: 7 (Redwood National Park)


Today was a day that didn't go quite as planned, but turned out perfectly. I thought that I would check out Fern Canyon, which was suggested to me by Sylvia, my Mount Shasta host, and then head further into Redwood National Forest. But, everything took a lot longer than I expected!


I drove maybe 5-7 or so miles on the dirt road that led to the Fern Canyon trailhead. Things started to get quite rocky, and I decided it would be better to walk the last 1.8 miles to the trailhead than put my car through more trauma. It was definitely the right choice. As I was walking, I did a lot of cringing as I heard the metal undercarriages of cars whacking against rocks and scraping through deep puddles and potholes.


Fern Canyon was stunning - it was used as a location in movies such as Jurassic Park 2 and Walking with Dinosaurs. The ferns and high cliff walls are so beautiful and peaceful. You truly feel like you're in another time. Era, even. The water flowing through and dripping from above. I could have spent a long time there contemplating.


But, I haven't the time to linger anywhere very long. Feeling very clever, I didn't go back to the parking lot and follow the road back to my car - I took another trail - James Irvine Trail, which seemed to be going back to another trail I noticed on my way - Clintonia Trail. Unfortunately, the 1.5 miles I hiked to Clintonia Trail did not take me back to the trailhead on the road, but rather to the forest terminus of the trail, east, now putting me 3 miles from the road.


Abashed by my mistake, but fully confident in my ability to hike another three miles, I trekked along the Clintonia Trail. I only met 2 people along the way, near where the trail began at the road. It was everything. Ancient trees and ferns. When I hike, my mind is generally quiet. I am listening for sounds among the silence. The chirping, chittering, movement in the brush, possible humans, possible large angry animals. What I think about, oddly, is math. Fractions. Percentages. You're 1/6 done. 1/3 done. 2 more of what you already did to go. 67% complete. Things like that. Frequently checking my odometer and figuring different ways to express how much I've done - how much is left. I imagine everyone does that. I find it very comforting.


The only real non-math thought that I had was that I believe God's only goal was to create the effect of sunlight through ancient trees. Dappled and warm. The rest of existence is just happenstance.


Once I made it back to my car (very grateful for all the fine work that she has done so far) - I traveled back up to Crescent City to get to the Harbor area and yummy food. A burger and sweet potato fries (my food uniform) in my belly - I read on the beach for a little bit until I got too cold, then sought out the sea lions which I heard in the distance. Funny things. Aggressive. Noisy!


I will grab some ice cream, watch the sunset, and allow myself another early night. Sleep is essential, and I never get enough.


Sorry for the boring background. Trees willing to support my phone were not easy to find.

Ancient cliff walls and ferns.

So very many ferns.

It certainly felt like a dino could be near.

Me in the FernGully. (Canyon!)

View from a bridge.

Sun dappled trees and trail.

Warm and silent.

Reading Big Burn to see if TR has any advice for how I should deal with these wildfires.

Beach Baby goes Pacific.

TO BE CONTINUED...



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