Redwood + Lassen Volcano National Parks

We’re checked into the hotel in Tahoe and off to the airport in an hour or so to pick up my parents, Nikki and Dan. We headed over to see Kat’s brother, Joel, for a bit this afternoon whilst they finished getting the hotel room sorted which was cool. As we haven’t had internet the last couple of nights in the Motel 6’s we’ve been staying at, will put up a few photos from where we’ve been since Crater Lake National Park.

Redwood National Park was somewhere Kat really wanted to go to, and the northern section of the park was pretty scenic driving down route 101, the Pacific Coast highway. We stopped for lunch at Klamath Overlook and took a walk along the coastal trail a little where we could hear sea lions down on the rocks, but couldn’t see them.

Klamath Overlook

Into the south section of Redwood National Park we got right into the giant redwoods and stopped off at Big Tree, which is a little over 300 foot high. We met a park ranger who explained the history of the area to us and took our photo in front of the tree. I’ve got a little video too, as none of the photos quite show how unbelievably tall the redwoods are!

Us at Big Tree

Further down on the drive, we came across a small group of female elk, which roam through the park, and then a couple of miles later half a dozen male elk just hanging out chewing on the grass:

Male elk

Lady Bird Johnson Grove was a nice 1 mile trail through the redwoods, though I was a little unsure about the warnings sign of ticks in the area that carry lyme disease. Thankfully we came back clear!

Lady Bird Johnson Grove

Just to give some kind of perspective as to how big the redwoods are, this one is hollowed out, though still alive, and can fit up to 20 people inside. I’m doing a good job of making sure it’s doesn’t close in on itself…

Holding open redwood

After a long drive across to Redding for the night, we then headed into Lassen Volcano National Park yesterday which I’d really been looking forward to. Thankfully the whole stretch of the park road was open, unlike Crater Lake, so we could drive right from the north entrance through the park to the south side.

Lassen Peak

Eating lunch at 7000ft was kinda weird, as from reading the guide book it advised against hiking in the area unless you had spent a couple of days camping to acclimatise to the elevation. I’d never though about it, and further round at the road’s highest point which was 8500ft, I could definately feel my breathing struggling a bit coming up even short distances.

Coming upon Lake Helen was beautiful though – there isn’t any camera trickery or weird light angles going on, this is pretty much what it looked like!

Lake Helen

Along with the areas devastated from the volcanic activity was the effects of glacier flows. This was a rock thrown out from the volcano that is left balanced along the path an old glacier route, and there was a real contrast between the smooth ground of the glacier floor and the rough volcanic rock.

Glacier rocks

The sulphur mines give a really good indication as to the volcano activity under the ground, and there were quite a few trails that lead through the boiling mud areas or suplhur mines. Gave off a really strong smell, and could hear it all bubbling inside too.

Sulphur mines

It was then just a nice 3 1/2 drive this morning down to South Lake Tahoe where we’re sat now. Lake Tahoe itself is really pretty, and I like the way the buildings area all designed to fit in with the surroundings rather than 3 or 4 storey concrete structures. Should be a really good week here, as there’s loads to do in + around the lake. So, we’ll be off to the airport in Reno soon, and Kat’s mom and other brother fly out on Tuesday.


Senior Content Development for Microsoft writing about Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS). Model train nerd. Occasionally I play video games.

One comment on “Redwood + Lassen Volcano National Parks
  1. robert says:
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