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Swimming holes of Northern California

swimming hole in Humbolt countyJust got back from a camping trip and tour de Humbolt county swimming holes and giant redwoods.

First stop was Humbolt Redwoods State Park.  45 miles south of Eureka and 20 miles north of Garberville off of Highway 101.  Near the tiny hamlet of Weott, along the awesome 32 mile long Avenue of the Giants. My husband and I spent two nights at Albee Creek, a fantastic place for family vacations (or two adults who like quiet).  $35 per night buys you a site on a paved loop (great for the kids to ride around and around on their bikes), complete with a fire pit, and a clean bathroom with flush toilets and hot showers (50 cents extra).  Did I mention hiking, swimming, giant redwood trees and twice daily deer watching?

After two nights we moved on to Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park,  50 miles north of Eureka and 25 miles south of Crescent City off of Highway 101.  If you go, don’t miss Auntie Stacey in Fern Canyonthe easy, though muddy, half mile hike into Fern Canyon.   I heard a little girl pronouce it “The best hike ever,” because of the many little wooden foot bridges that criss-crossed the creek bed.  Boys and girls scrambled over fallen logs and climbed up leaning bohemiths, all the while marveling at the wall of ferns on each side of the narrow canyon.  The trail ends in a pygmy forest.  Just outside the valley, stately elk graze.  They’re not tame, but don’t mind photographers as long as you keep your distance.

Be sure to pack warm clothes, this place is fog chilled!  During the summer there are daily park-led nature walks, Junior Ranger programs, and campfire programs.

If you can’t head for the parks, here are some online activities for children.Elk grazing

See at the river, or maybe I can face paint at your next birthday party, or summer event,

Have fun!

Auntie Stacey

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