Observation Deck Hike

The Observation Deck at Henry Cowell overlooks rare sandhill habitat and offers huge views of the mountains and the sea. Photo by Hilltromper.

4 miles RT; 2 hours; moderate (550 ft. elev. gain)
Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park

Zip Lining in The Redwoods

The ideal posture for zipping across the chasm: safe handgrip, knees bent and ready to have a blast. Karen Kefauver photo.

Click in and kick off—because those big trees aren't going to ogle themselves.

A Forester for The Trees

Nadia Hamey with one of the old redwoods on the Cemex property. "They have a will to live," she says. Photo by Clark Tate.

Think commercial loggers can't be environmentalists? Meet Nadia Hamey.

Ten Amazing Facts About Redwoods

1. The earliest redwoods showed up on Earth shortly after the dinosaurs—and before flowers, birds, spiders... and, of course, humans. (More below.)  Photo by Miguel Vieira / Creative Commons.

Discover your local redwood forests—rare, vital and at risk.

Enviros Cheer Logging Rule Exemption

A law relaxing timber regulations in California will not include the Santa Cruz Mountains. Photo by Fir0002 / Wikimedia Commons.

A new law relaxing public oversight of timber harvest plans will not apply to the Santa Cruz Mountains.

Big Basin State Park

Cali's first state park is still one of the best.

Coast Redwoods

Photo credit: Paul Hamilton/Creative Commons.

If you were to strap on climbing gear and make your way up the tallest tree in the world, it would be like scaling a 35-story building. Seasoned window washers on skyscrapers might not think the 370-plus-foot coast redwood so high, but they may be surprised at what they’d find near its crown: soil, huckleberry, crickets, salamanders, seabirds and flying squirrels.

Marbled Murrelets And The Big Basin General Plan

A marbled murrelet chick in a nest. Photo by Peter Halasz/Creative Commons.

The good news for marbled murrelet watchers is that new development in Big Basin won't happen near the old growth forest. The bad news is they still don't think it goes far enough.

Castle Rock SP

Castle Rock State Park, one of the Bay Area's favorite places to climb and boulder. Photo credit: Blase Iuliano.

A rock climbing playground near the summit.

Redwood Trail

The Father of the Forest, a 2,000-year-old redwood tree, is just one of the stupendous sights on Big Basin Park's Redwood Trail. Hilltromper photo.

A short, easy trail in Big Basin Redwoods State Park.