Blog

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 SM 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.

Treetop Drought

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With the heatwave we are experiencing in California this week, it’s hard to not think about drought. All this dry weather, combined with below-average rainfall, must pose serious challenges for local trees. What’s amazing to me, is that the fantastically …


The canopy in Boulder Creek Forest provides nesting places for the marbled murrelet, an imperiled seabird. by Paolo Vescia

Harvesting Timber for Forest Protection

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There is a sad paradox to much of my work as a forester. I became a forester because I love the forest, yet much of my work requires me to kill trees. No matter what the larger goal is for …



You helped us protect the Noyo River Redwoods. Photo by Julie Martin

Arbor Day

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“Other holidays repose on the past. Arbor Day proposes the future.”  Quote by J. Sterling Morton, Co-founder of Arbor Day It’s been a significant week for the environment, with the concentration of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere exceeding 401 ppm …


(HSU) interns, Shawna and Jake, conducting weekly plant monitoring.

Looking for the Forest in Bloom

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While many people were searching for brightly colored eggs this past Sunday, I spent my Easter hiking in the forest looking for trillium and rhododendron flowers. As I walked along the Lady Bird Johnson Trail in Redwood National Park, I …


Photo of Big Basin area © 2011 William K Matthias

Happy Earth Day!

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Did you know that Earth Day is the world’s largest civic observance? Every year, it’s celebrated by more than a billion people in 192 countries. On Earth Day, I like to take some time to simply appreciate the natural beauty …


John Muir in his beloved Sierra Nevada. Photo courtesy the National Park Service.

Happy John Muir Day!

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Happy John Muir Day! Born 176 years ago today, John Muir is possibly the most renowned American naturalist, writer and philosopher — and for good reason! Muir helped preserve Yosemite Valley and Sequoia National Park, he founded the Sierra Club, …


There is nothing better than exposing a student to nature in a way that will have a lasting positive impact.

Happy Environmental Education Week!

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It’s National Environmental Education Week, and that means we’re celebrating all the wonderful schools and organizations around the world who work to connect youths and their families to the natural world. In my own experience growing up, I was fortunate …


Here at the League, we love learning about the forest! Photo of RCCI researcher collecting data, by Steve Sillett.

Top 5 Fascinating Redwoods Facts

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It’s National Environmental Education Week! This week is a celebration of environmental education and a special time to inspire learning and stewardship among students. I can’t say enough about how important outdoor education is to complete the circle of land …


Small salamanders are having a big impact. Photo by Anthony Ambrose

Salamanders in the News

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It’s not often that salamanders make the New York Times.  But last week, the ‘Science’ section featured an article on a study investigating the role of salamanders in the global carbon cycle. Basically, salamanders are among the top predators in …


Getting there isn’t always half the fun — but these resources can help!

Handy E-Resources for Redwoods Trips

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Want to hike or camp in the redwoods?  Don’t know where to go, don’t have a car, or need a last minute camp site? Or maybe you don’t want to go alone, or are wondering if your dog will be …


Oakland Tech Takes to the Woods

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Last Friday, three school buses motored up into the Oakland Hills with 140 ninth graders from Oakland Tech High School. These students joined us to visit Chabot Space & Science Center and explore the coast redwood forest just beyond. Despite …


Reconnecting families and future generations to nature is a critical priority. Photo by Paolo Vescia.

Kids in the Redwoods, Part 2

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Last week, I wrote about the value of bringing kids to the redwoods.  A family trip to the redwoods can be such an incredible gift to children, creating lifelong memories and a connection with nature that can improve life in …


Meet the Treetop Lichen

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Lichens contribute such beautiful colors to our redwood forests, growing elegantly on trees, fallen logs, and rocks. Each lichen you see is actually a symbiotic partnership — algae or cyanobacteria wrapped up in a fungal package. Thanks to canopy biologists Rikke Reese Næsborg, Cameron Williams, Marie Antoine, and …


Kids and adults alike will love exploring lush Fern Canyon in Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park. Photo by oskay, Flickr Creative Commons.

Springtime Family Redwoods Getaways

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What are your fondest childhood memories? It’s often the small moments we share with loved ones, like sitting around a campfire and watching the stars, that stick with us for life. And you don’t have to shell out the big …


During BioBlitz 2014, League scientists climb and explore the tallest trees in Muir Woods for the first time ever.

First Canopy Exploration at Muir Woods

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This time last week, our intrepid research partners were ascending up into the tall trees of Cathedral Grove at Muir Woods National Monument. This historic first climb was part of BioBlitz 2014, a massive effort throughout the Golden Gate National …


Students collected data about the redwoods forest at BioBlitz 2014.

Kids in the Redwoods, Part 1

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Did you hear about the BioBlitz in the Bay Area last week? Scientists, community members, families and school groups converged on Muir Woods and Crissy Field to explore, catalog and discover our local ecology. I was at Muir Woods on …


During BioBlitz 2014, League scientists climb and explore the tallest trees in Muir Woods for the first time ever.

You Can Help Scientists Learn about Redwoods

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Thousands of nature enthusiasts like you recently joined Save the Redwoods League and other conservation organizations at BioBlitz to inventory the plant and animal species that live in Muir Woods National Monument and several national park sites. You can help with research like this anytime, anywhere.


Beautiful Bothe-Napa Valley State Park near Calistoga offers hikes through a redwood canyon along a creek. Photo by Life in a Yurt, Flickr Creative Commons

Trip Ideas, Earth Day Redwoods Gifts

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In the heart of wine country, you’ll find an inviting place to camp in a yurt, hike, picnic and swim among towering redwoods. Here you can celebrate Earth Day by joining an April 19 weeding event.


Deborah Zierten worked with junior high students from San Francisco to document species at Muir Woods during BioBlitz. Photo credit: Tonatiuh Trejo-Cantwell

BioBlitzing with students!

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On March 28th, over 4,000 visitors and volunteer scientists arrived at Muir Woods National Monument ready to learn, discover, and explore this absolutely amazing redwood forest. Thousands more visited the Crissy Field Center for the Biodiversity Festival. Whether or not …