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Students set up fern plots and learn scientific field techniques as part of Pepperwood Preserve's TeenNat program.

Conservation Scientists in the Making

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As an environmental educator, there is nothing better than seeing young people making observations and asking questions out in nature. Questions like, “Why do you think that bay tree and redwood are growing so close together?”, “Why are the tanoaks …



Nature persists in the paved expanses of the urban jungle. Photo by Luke McGuff, flickr creative commons.

Urban Wilderness: In the Heart of the City, Nature Takes Root

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There is an empty lot just up the hill from Save the Redwoods League’s office in San Francisco. The lot is fenced off, but by peering through the gaps between the slats, it is possible to get a brief glimpse …


Fern Canyon is all its ferny glory.

My favorite hike

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When I am driving north on Highway 101 through Humboldt County and know my destination is the James Irvine trail at Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, it’s hard to contain my excitement. This week, Orange Coast shares the history of how …


SCA crew, and their California State Parks supervisor.

Historic Redwood Grove Gets TLC Through Team Effort

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Have you ever thought about what it takes to take care of protected land at the landscape scale? Most of us don’t manage areas of land much greater than our own backyards — it’s difficult to think on the scale …


Yosemite Valley – 1866. Photo by Carleton Watkins

The Power of Photography: Connection and Conservation

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For almost a hundred years, Save the Redwoods League has been protecting and restoring redwood forests and enabling people to connect with their peace and beauty. Photographers and painters began connecting people to redwoods decades earlier, beginning with Carleton Watkins’ …


Longtime League Councillor and research advisor, Bill Libby, says hello to a squawking Steller's jay being studied at Big Basin State Park.

Bird in hand and two in the bush

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Several weeks ago, a wily Steller’s jay outsmarted me while I cooked breakfast under the redwoods in Humboldt Redwoods State Park.  I was about to sit down and eat my scrambled eggs, but decide to first fetch the boiling water off my …


A giant step for understanding redwood tree rings

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Today, Redwoods and Climate Change Initiative scientist, Allyson Carroll, shares her perspective on how she decodes the history of redwoods from tree rings. Imagine finishing a massive puzzle, one involving nearly half a million pieces and taking years to complete… it feels …


Giant sequoia forest photo by Tom Hilton, Flickr Creative Commons

The Pursuit of Happiness

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“There is nothing so American as our parks. The scenery and wildlife are native. The fundamental idea behind the parks is native. It is, in brief, that the country belongs to the people…Parks stand as the outward symbol of this …


A pygmy forest at Van Damme State Park in Mendocino County looks young, but it's not. Photo credit: David Berry, Flickr Creative Commons

Pygmy Forests Offer a Surprise

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On a recent trip to visit some of the amazing redwood parks in Mendocino County, I happened upon a type of forest I had never seen before. A forest where pines, cypress and redwood trees are a mere fraction of …


This redwood grove on a League-owned Napa County property will get protection from extra-intense wildfires.

Fierce Fires Pose Threats to Forests, Water

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It’s fire season again. Last week, the local news reported on a 2,500-acre fire in Napa County, just east of the redwood range and Save the Redwoods League’s property near Bothe-Napa State Park. As I’ve mentioned before in previous blogs, …


Drought Distress

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I stumbled across a sea of sword fern that is showing signs of drought during my annual field campaign last month. Along the Damnation Creek Trail at Del Norte Redwoods State Park, the typically green carpet of sword fern was undeniably …


“This photo shows the friendship, fun and bonding that took place in the redwoods. Our experience with the volunteers and staff at the state park was wonderful — everyone seemed genuinely pleased to meet Betty and to help this become a memorable trip.” -Trina Baldwin (Betty’s friend and driver on the trip)

Betty’s Trip to the Redwoods in Photos

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In my last blog I introduced you to Betty Thompson, a 66-year-old woman from Georgia with cerebral palsy, who was about to realize her lifelong dream of seeing the redwoods. In June, Betty and her friends embarked on a weeklong …


10th Anniversary Climb

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  This week, I celebrated 10 years of coast redwood forest research and had the pleasure of climbing into an old redwood at the Grove of Old Trees in Sonoma County. This little-known forest is where I learned to climb …



League supporters Victoria Reeder and Roy Williams recently celebrated their wedding amongst the redwoods at Big Basin State Park.

Love in a Redwood Forest

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It’s no surprise the redwoods inspire people in many different ways. The biodiversity of plants and animals inspires scientists, the towering red-hued trunks of the trees inspire artists, and the fallen logs and clear creeks inspire an adventurous spirit in …


Bennett Juniper is quite large! Our property caretaker is standing to the right of the tree.

Caring for One of the Oldest Living Trees in the World

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Out in Tuolumne County, near the Middle Fork of the Stanislaus River, is a Western juniper tree known as the Bennett Juniper. It is estimated to be somewhere between 2,000 and 6,000 years old, and some botanists think it may …