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Massive Trees In Hendy Woods State Park

Hendy Woods State Park – Visit for the Trees

With trees as tall as skyscrapers and an understory of primeval ferns, a hike in Hendy Woods State Park just outside of Boonville, California will leave you with a sore neck from staring up for so long. On the soggy day that we visited, we had the entire Hendy Woods Park to ourselves. We elected to do a loop hike in the Big Hendy area - a great choice as it turned out. From the…

Santa Barbara, Shops On State Street In The City Of Santa Barbara In Southern California

Things to Do In Santa Barbara, California

On a recent drive up the California coast, I discovered Santa Barbara — an upscale paradise with its red-tile rooftops, thriving local food and wine scene, compact downtown and bounty of outdoor activities. Located about two hours north of Los Angeles, where the Santa Ynez Mountains meet the Pacific Ocean, Santa Barbara describes itself as the “American Riviera.” A 1925 earthquake leveled much of the city and buildings were re-built in the Spanish-Revival style, resulting…

The Russian Gulch Bridge Near Mendocino The Russian Gulch Bridge – The South Headlands Trail Goes Under It At Road Level

Things to do in Mendocino, California

You'll have no problem finding fun things to do in Mendocino, California. Anybody I have bumped into since visiting Mendocino exclaims "I love that place." That's how I feel about it too. For a small village with a population of just 849, Mendocino and the surrounding area offers an incredibly diverse range of things to do in a spectacular setting. And getting there is part of the fun. Getting to Mendocino Chances are you'll be…

Beautiful Coastal Scenery South Of Mendocino

Stornetta Public Lands Hike near Mendocino

If you're looking for a beautiful coastal hike that delivers superlative views along with big time drama complete with crumbling cliffs and pounding seas, then head for the Stornetta Public Lands, just north of Point Arena and south of Mendocino. Hailed by the New York Times as the #1 spot to visit in 2014, the Stornetta Public Lands are part of the California Coastal National Monument System - and the first onshore unit. You only…

Chillin' On The Summit Of Ryan Mountain

Ryan Mountain Hike, Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua Tree National Park is a hiker's paradise, especially in early March when the temperatures are moderate and the desert flowers are beginning to bloom.While visiting Palm Springs, my daughter and I made a day trip to the park. We only had a few hours so we chose the Ryan Mountain hike for the fantastic 360 degree views you get from the summit. The hike is steep in places but not difficult. Over 1.5 miles…

A Pretty River Walk In Mariposa

Mariposa California – Gateway to Yosemite

The pretty town of historic Mariposa California with a population of just 18,000 sits at the junction of Highways 49 and 140, not more than a 40 minute drive away from the west entrance of Yosemite National Park. You would need to add a few hours to the drive if you hit a big snow storm like I did. Mariposa California is a former gold mining town - as you'll quickly see with door handles…

Looking Up At The Non-existent Escondido Falls

Escondido Falls Hike in Malibu, California

My expectations were low as I headed off on a hike to Escondido Falls in Malibu. After all, I was in southern California - a place at least in my mind associated with lots of people and very little in the way of wilderness. Fortunately I was wrong. It seems that some of the canyons accessible from the Pacific Coast Highway offer some pretty decent hiking. I took a few hours and hiked to Escondido…

Glorious Area Around Lower Yosemite Falls

Yosemite in Winter – What You Can Do

Yosemite National Park is unbelievably popular - especially between June and September when half the visitors for the year show up. Visiting Yosemite in winter is no less beautiful - just different and obviously not everything is open. A visit to Yosemite in winter is ideal if you're adverse to crowds and you're okay with little access to most of the hiking trails. But there are still lots of outdoorsy things to do in winter…

Beautiful Mariposa Grove In Yosemite National Park

Sequoia Trees in Yosemite – A Magical Experience

A trip to see the giant sequoias in Yosemite National Park is bucket list worthy. While I have seen some big trees in my time - Cathedral Grove on the way to Tofino on Vancouver Island, Muir Woods near San Francisco and true virgin forest in northwestern Ontario where few people have ever trod, the giant sequoias in Yosemite are nothing short of mind-blowing. Spend a few hours wandering through Mariposa Grove and you'll feel…

Me Enjoying The Ziplining Course

Day Trip to Catalina Island From LA

One of the outstanding things to do out of Los Angeles is the day trip to Catalina Island. It feels like a world away from LA and yet it's just over an hour by ferry and all of about 22 miles southwest of the city.  Catalina Island or Santa Catalina Island as it is properly called, is a rocky one measuring 22 miles long by eight miles wide with mountains rising to 2,097 feet above…

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