on August 25, 2011
I have always heard my mom tell stories that her dad told her about his young adulthood in northern California. She said he would tell her of these tall, tall redwoods that were as big around as houses and were so tall you couldn't see the tops. I remember seeing a photo of my grandpa with a car parked in front of one of those huge trees and how small he looked next to the tree. Mom and I have always dreamed together of travelling and seeing the giant redwoods were always one of those places we wanted to visit. On my trip of San Francisco, my friend Jennifer and I decided to head out of the city and find a little quietness to settle the spirit. Neither of us are city girls and both need to sometimes recharge just to deal with a large number of people. This day turned out to be one of the best days of my trip. Muir Woods is a little piece of heaven just north of the city about 30 minutes or 12 miles. We drove across the Golden Gate Bridge leaving San Francisco and drove through the small artsy town of Sausalito. We drove through the town to the mountains and what seemed like forever but was only a short few miles. I would never have thought that you could see redwoods so close to San Francisco.Muir Woods is a national park and is open year around from 8am to sunset and for the small admission price of $2-3 it is worth the trip.The park is large enough for hiking, but small enough that you don't feel exhausted at the end. It is a great place for kids, families or just the single person looking for some peace and quiet. The park was opened in 1908 for the conservation and protection of the redwoods. Today there are paths that are clean and well maintained passing by many types of ferns, trees, and wildflowers. There are also numerous less travelled trails leading to beautiful areas all over the mountain. You will see many species of birds and bats and other wildlife such as deer, chipmunks, and fish. Muir Woods in a rainforest so you may find fog on any given day but this is what gives the trees and ferns their water. Since it is a rainforest you will find temp ranging between 40-70 degrees, so pack a light jacket with a hood for the frequent rains. For those who want to stay all day or just want a snack, there is a café what serves soups and sandwiches. There is a lovely gift shop where you can purchase anything from t-shirts to rocks and many crafts made from the fallen trees. Many of the items are organic or from sustainable products. I bought a book of postcards with photos of the tree, which has been a great keepsake.
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