This is a place for personal insights into our work by Save the Redwoods League leaders. You can explore posts by category: It Takes a Forest℠ focuses on League project and program updates; Off the Beaten Path gets you into the redwood forest; Redwoods Futures illuminates the issues affecting our redwood forests; and The Eighth Wonders explores the art, education, and science of the redwood forests. Please join the conversation by posting your stories and comments.

Coast redwood photograph by Daniel R. Hadley.

New Study Provides Coast Redwood Climate Forecast


Understanding how climate change impacts the world’s tallest forest is like assembling an incredibly large jigsaw puzzle – the full picture emerges slowly, one piece at time. But occasionally, a critical piece falls into place…

In a League-sponsored study, Wicket sniffs for the scent of white-footed vole scat. Her handler, Debbie Woollett, is Co-Founder of Working Dogs for Conservation. Photo by Humboldt State University

Debbie Woollett: Putting a Dog’s Nose to Work for the Forest


One of biologist Debbie Woollett’s star colleagues has four legs. Wicket is a Labrador mix for Working Dogs for Conservation, an organization that Woollett co-founded to apply dogs’ abilities to conservation projects. Wicket can recognize the scents of 26 species and has “alerted” on moon bears in China, elephants in Southeast Asia, invasive snails in Hawaii, and grizzly bears and black bears in North America.

Redwoods photo by David Baselt

How to Take Great Photos in the Redwoods


The first rule of nature photography is to take in the scenery before you begin snapping shots willy-nilly. This will give you a feel for the scenes you want to capture. Once you have an idea of a few photos you’d like to get, set up for them and take your time with each one. The intention behind your images will show through when you get home to view them.

Yosemite Valley by simone pittaluga, Flickr Creative Commons

Happy Birthday Yosemite!


I have been to Yosemite National Park a handful of times, and on each visit I have a very different experience. Whether I am rock climbing in the valley, backpacking in Tuolumne or hiking trails with tourists from all over the world, every time the park takes my breath away. Its towering peaks, rushing waterfalls and granite rocks warrant some steep competition for other natural areas.

League Councillor Blake Williams shares his enthusiasm for the redwoods with his child. Photo by Paolo Vescia

Blake Williams: Love for Forest Stems from Father’s Work


Blake Williams inherited his love of the forest from his father, a research entomologist and forester and the first African American in the United States to earn the trifecta of a BA, Masters, and PhD in that research area. “Growing up in Berkeley with that family background, I’ve always been interested in natural resources and forests,” said Williams.

Ivy and Redwoods

Ivy Can Strangle Redwoods


I came across a fallen redwood recently that had been severely strangled by English ivy. The redwood had fallen across the road and a cross-section had been cut through the redwood’s trunk, revealing a shockingly think mass of ivy branches tightly wrapped around the tree’s bark.

Susan Vreeland named the League in her will. Photo by Kip Gray

Susan Vreeland: Author Ensures Enduring Support for Redwoods


Susan Vreeland believes everyone needs some engagement with Earth’s astonishing natural places. That’s why she has named Save the Redwoods League in her will. “Save the Redwoods acknowledges this human need, for the sake of our national health, our emotional health,” she said. “Preserving more redwood groves provides an atmosphere to heal, to consider one’s life, to confront the eternal.”

Orick Mill

Drone’s-Eye View of the Orick Mill Site


When you drive north on Highway 101, just past the small town of Orick, you will begin to marvel at the giant redwoods of Redwood National and State Parks. There is no sign letting you know you have arrived; you just slowly become shaded by the great canopies towering above you.

Peter Comanor, right.

Peter Comanor: An Investment to Protect ‘A Beautiful Earth’


For botanist and plant ecologist Peter Comanor, the redwood forest is about receiving and giving. He first saw a redwood tree in an exhibit at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. It was, he recalled, an interesting and informative display, but it didn’t prepare him for his first visit to the redwood forest.


How My Family Backpacking Dream Came True (And Yours Can, Too)


I can think of no wilder adventure than spending a week exploring the Yosemite backcountry with three teenage boys. With my oldest son heading into his final year of high school, I decided to go all out this summer in search of a truly epic, life-changing, never-to-forget experience that my sons and I could share.

Sun filters through the Cathedral-like coast redwood forest of Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park. Photo by Stephen Sillett.

Remembering 9/11 and Finding Peace Among the Redwoods


While working at Save the Redwoods League for the last five years, I’ve met people from all walks of life who share a resounding love for the redwoods. In listening to why people love the redwood forest, I often hear how at peace people feel when they walk among the giants.

Arcata High School students measure tree height using a clinometer. Your League support enabled them and others to explore forest stewardship careers. Photo by The Forest Foundation

The Forest Foundation: Motivating Future Forest Stewards


Redwoods are Humboldt County’s greatest treasure. They also happen to be an awesome teaching tool. Yet many of the area’s young people know little about redwoods and forest stewardship careers. Thanks to your support, which enabled Save the Redwoods League to provide an education grant to our partner, The Forest Foundation, the next generation of forest caretakers is taking root.

Oracle volunteer day at San Vicente Redwoods, August 22, 2015.

Oracle Employees Take to the Forest


Since about 92% of the redwood forest is second and third growth, restoration will be a key strategy. Restoring young forest so that it can become old growth once again is essential for the future of conservation. Restoration at San Vicente Redwoods started recently with a volunteer day. Twelve volunteers from the Oracle Corporation spent the morning pulling invasive weeds amongst the redwoods in the Santa Cruz Mountains.

Avenue of the Giants, Humboldt Redwoods State Park. Photo by HSU

Avenue of the Giants Anniversary


The beautiful Avenue of the Giants that winds for 32 miles through Humboldt Redwoods State Park was dedicated 55 years ago, on August 27, 1960. Thousands of visitors drive under the towering redwoods that line the Avenue as they visit Humboldt Redwoods to experience the breath-taking majesty of the largest old-growth forest on the planet.

Peter Frazier at the San Vicente Redwoods property.

Peter B. Frazier: Making Wise Decisions in Changing Times


Peter B. Frazier, Save the Redwoods League Board of Directors Treasurer, comes from entrepreneurial pioneer stock. When his great grandfather was only 19 years old, he headed from Boston Harbor around Cape Horn to the then-tiny town of San Francisco. Like thousands of people from around the world, he made the long journey to look for gold.

Lace Lichen

Introducing Our New State Lichen!


As many people know, each state has selected symbols to represent its natural and cultural heritage. In California, these symbols range from the state rock, serpentine; to the state marine mammal, the grey whale; to the state tree, the mighty … Continued

Our group gathers beneath the redwoods at Big Basin.

If Redwoods had Elephants…


Recently, I had the honor of discussing research and forestry with guests from the Government of India and Michigan State University at Big Basin Redwoods State Park. This gathering was part of the US-India REDD+ Policy Exchange Tour and sponsored … Continued