Today’s blog post is the LAST little bit of content from our Redwoods road trip. So sad when we get to the very end, but that means new stuff is on the way 😉 We had such an amazing time road tripping from LA to SF to the Redwoods, so much to see along the way and so many amazing shots in the process. If you missed our write up and photos from the trip, I’ll link the SF section here & Redwoods section here. Now back to today’s post! We are going to be discussing our favorite photography spots while exploring the Redwoods National Park! Let’s get into it!
After researching many popular attractions inside the Redwoods, this particular destination was definitely the most raved about. The photos online looked UNREAL and something that we could not pass up, we put it high up on our list and spent an entire morning here. There were lots of tips online about making the most out of your trip like getting there early to beat the crowds and when the lighting was best throughout the canyon, so we planned accordingly. We wanted to be there super early to avoid crowds so we started our hike around sunrise, and luckily we were the only ones there. Starting this early was great because it was a magical experience having the hike all to ourselves and I’ve never experienced anything quite like this canyon before. One thing about starting around sunrise is that the sun hasn’t had the chance to get up high enough to illuminate the canyon through the trees up above. While the canyon was still absolutely breathtaking early in the morning, about two hours after sunrise was when things started to go to another level. If you want some really nice photos of light beams shining down into the canyon we would suggest being there a little after sunrise or just hanging out for a while to observe how the lighting changes. Regardless, this location is an amazing photography spot and one that can be enjoyed at any time of the day so make sure you spend some quality time here. Another thing we wanted to throw in about Fern Canyon is that as you continue going down the canyon, you will have to jump over or through little streams of water and depending on the time of year and how much rain has accumulated, you very well might end up with soaked shoes like we did 😉 So maybe bring a extra pair if that is something you want to avoid! Other than that, this is a very popular spot so if you don’t get there early you might be joining large families on your Fern Canyon adventure 😉
Stout Grove: Jedidiah Smith State Park
This was the first place we checked out once we entered the Redwoods. We wanted to see some really huge Redwoods right when we got there, to really get a feel for the next few days ahead of us. We heard this was one of the most photogenic groves in the area and the best one to go to in general. Once out of the car, we were taken back by how many huge Redwoods we saw, and just how big the area was in general. It was the perfect first stop on our trip and we had a wonderful time walking around the grove looking at these unique trees. We had gotten there just before sunset so the pictures we had taken were a little bit too dark, but regardless this spot was definitely worthy of great content.
Damnation Creek Trail
Damnation Creek is another great photo spot, that’s also very easy to get to because its right off the 101 freeway. This was one of our favorite places after checking out a bunch of spots throughout the day. It’s part of the Del Norte Coast Redwoods State Park, which means it is on the more northern end of all the state parks. We were there around sunset and it was perfect timing because the trail leads you through a grove that is situated on a western facing slope, allowing for the setting sun to shine perfectly through the massive Redwood Trees. While we only ventured down a short section of the trail, this hike will take you all the way down to the ocean, but one thing that makes this spot one of our favorites was that no matter how far you walk you are surrounded by amazing photo opportunities.
Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway
The last photo spot we want to talk about is a little more broad than the others, but its definitely a must see location if you are in the area. The Newton B Drury Parkway is a scenic detour that runs parallel to the 101 freeway, but takes you down a two lane road engulfed in the dense redwood forest. The drive allow you the opportunity to stop whenever you would like and admire the massive trees that sit only a few feet away from the road. Since it is a more spread out area, its easier to avoid crowds and find unique, secluded spots to enjoy by yourself. There are tons of trailheads that start right off the parkway and a short walk down any of these trails will provide amazing compositions in every direction that you look.