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Ave of Giants - 50 Ways to Celebrate

Avenue of the Giants Parkway
50 Ways to Celebrate

The 32-mile-long road has been around since the days when stagecoaches wended their way through these spectacular redwoods 200 miles north of San Francisco.

Bolling Grove dedication ceremony in 1921

Photo by Howard King


1. Drive along the Avenue. You can either download our auto tour (external link) to your MP3 player or get a hard copy at the visitor center.

2. Stroll in Founders Grove.

3. Support a state initiative to increase funding for Humboldt Redwoods and other California state parks.

4. See if you can find a "goose-pen" (a hole burned inside the base of a standing tree) as you walk from the Founder's Tree to the Dyerville Giant.

5. Imagine the day in 1991 when the Dyerville Giant crashed to the forest floor.

6. Get your bearings at Humboldt Redwoods State Park Visitor Center (external link).

7. Enjoy a program led by a docent or ranger.

8. Gaze up.

9. Gaze out.

10. Look down.

11. Admire the largest contiguous expanse of old-growth coastal redwoods in the world: Rockefeller Forest (external link).

12. Hike the Drury-Chaney Loop Trail (external link) in April, in honor of Newton Drury's birthday. Who was Newton Drury? Learn more.

13. Find your own favorite trail (external link).

14. Notice Bull Creek's clarity, a sign of the successful restoration of logged lands upstream.

15. Cool off (external link) in the river that follows the Avenue of the Giants, the South Fork of the Eel.

16. Warm up beside the South Fork of the Eel River at architect Julia Morgan's four-sided fireplace (external link).

17. Better yet, get married (external link) at the historic hearth or elsewhere in Humboldt Redwoods.

18. Bounce between biomes.

19. Float down the Eel River.

20. Sign up for an interpretive canoe hike (external link) on the South Fork of the Eel River (spring only).

21. Hush...

22. Hear the hoots of a spotted owl.

23. Thrill to the piercing sound of the varied thrush.

24. Admire an audacious river otter.

25. Locate an albino redwood.

26. Find a talking tree (but keep your distance!).

27. Enjoy the springtime parade of trilliums, milkmaids, Indian warriors, fairy lanterns, ladyslippers, calypso orchids, redwood lilies, and other flowers (external link).

28. Hunt for mushrooms. (Photograph, but don't pick!)

29. Introduce someone young to something old. (Save the Redwoods League's Redwoods Learning Center makes it easy!)

30. Camp in an orchard: Albee Creek Campground (external link), open mid-May through mid-October.

31. Camp under giants: Burlington Campground (external link), open all year.

32. Get away from it all: Two "environmental camps," (external link) open mid-May through later September.

33. Find backpacking bliss on Humboldt's 100 miles of trails. Rest up at its five trail camps (external link).

34. Camping with horses: Cuneo Creek Horse Camp (external link), open mid-April to mid-October.

35. Ride, ride, ride (external link).

36. Run, jog or walk the Avenue of the Giants Marathon (external link) and/or the Humboldt Redwoods Marathon (external link).

37. Bicycle beside redwoods in the Tour of the Unknown Coast (external link).

38. Time travel in a local museum.

39. Support redwood-related businesses (external link). Some of the attractions include the "immortal tree," the "drive-through tree," and the "tree house."

40. See how redwoods measure up. Check out a list (external link) of the tallest redwoods in the world. Sixty-eight out of the top 100 are in Humboldt Redwoods State Park.

41. Learn how redwoods hydrate their highest branches.

42. Watch a movie (external link) featuring former Save the Redwoods League executive director Ruskin Hartley about how these forests may be affected by climate change.

43. Be a proud state park "litter-getter." (external link)

44. Learn about volunteer opportunities (external link) at Humboldt Redwoods State Park.

45. Dedicate a tree or a grove or plant a seedling in Humboldt Redwoods State Park.

47. Send a Save the Redwoods League e-card describing your adventures on the Avenue.

48. Learn about Humboldt Redwoods' place in history in State Parks of California (external link) by Joseph H. Engbeck, Jr.

49. Read a riveting non-fiction adventure about climbing the loftiest redwoods: The Wild Trees (external link) by Richard Preston.

50. Dazzle your friends with a Save the Redwoods widget on your website or Facebook page.

Varied thrush, spotted owl: courtesy California Library of Natural Sounds, Oakland California

Audio Production:
Joan Hamilton, Audio Guides to the Outdoors

Sandy Bartlett, Visitor Center Manager, Humboldt Redwoods State Park (6)
Michelle Gardner, Sector Superintendent, Humboldt Redwoods State Park (44)
Ruth Hoke, Mounted Assistance Unit Volunteer (10, 18, 35)
Mike O'Hara, Board Member, Humboldt Redwoods Interpretive Association (13)
Susan O'Hara, President, Humboldt Redwoods Interpretive Association (8, 29, 30, 31, 32, 38)
Ruskin Hartley, former Executive Director, Save the Redwoods League (1)
Maralyn Renner, Treasurer and Mounted Assistance Unit Volunteer, Humboldt Redwoods Interpretive Association (25)
John O'Rourke, Supervising Ranger, Humboldt Redwoods State Park (19, 21, 39)
Emily Peterson, Ranger, Humboldt Redwoods State Park (7, 13, 34)
Dave Stockton, Executive Director, Humboldt Redwoods Interpretive Association: (1, 2, 4, 5, 9, 14, 16, 24, 26, 28)

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