Thursday morning, Ashwin and I packed up the car and headed 6 hours north to the Redwood National Forest. In planning our trip we learned that though dogs were allowed in the campsites, they were not allowed on any of the trails. Ashwin and I decided it was best for all four of us if the doggies stayed home. Between the wonderful doggy sitter/walker I met at the park and our awesome roommate, the dogs had their own mini-staycation!
With awesome snacks, a pop-up tent, sleeping bags, and warm clothes, we were ready to go! Unfortunately, I ended up feeling car sick for most of the drive and missed out on the lovely views of the coast– a combination of a windy roads and being on the passengers side. When we finally arrived at our camping spot in Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, we only had an hour of daylight to set up and cook dinner. Many of the sites were already taken by a mixture of RVs and tents, with people gathered around their campfires.
We parked under some tall Redwood trees and unpacked everything we would need for the night. Signs warned to keep all food in the trunk of our car or in the metal bear proof locker nailed into the ground. Ashwin worked on starting a fire to cook our chicken, and between his frat skills and my summer camp skills, we managed to get a good fire going!
Weather.com had promised me 50 degree nights… it felt more like 40’s. I slept in leggings, sweatpants, a flannel shirt and a sweatshirt and I was still cold! In that moment, I wished we could have brought the dogs with us because Snickers could have kept me warmer! I didn’t get much sleep, but our excitement about finally exploring the park got us up and moving.
The lady working at the welcome center gave us great advice on the best trails to hike. Friday we opted for shorter trails since we had to drive into “town” for more ice. We saw some of the largest trees in the park and got to see some Roosevelt Elk up close and personal! I will save my thoughts on the forest itself for the part 2, but for now I think the pictures speak for themselves. Friday was a great introduction to what the park had to offer, and after an evening of more chicken and reading by the fire at our new and improved campsite, Ashwin and I were ready to take on a full day of hiking on Saturday!