Hiouchi, CA

Home: Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park hiker/biker campsite

Day 2

The Redwoods. We’ve arrived at what will likely be a highlight area of our riding when we look back in a few years. Is it too soon for such highlights? Setting the expectations too high, and thus making it impossible to endure a slog through Kansas? Or just what we need for an emotional boost while we’re still getting our legs under us? Either way, we’re staying for a few days.

Lamby cradled by Rett, cradled by trees.

Regarding getting our legs under us, Rett has been feeling increasing pain in her hip when riding, even with the short-mileage (but not easy) days we’ve been doing lately. So while we’d been planning/hoping to stay multiple nights at Jedediah Smith, the first Redwoods park, the extended stay would now serve a dual-purpose as a recovery clinic too.

It wasn’t clear what the hiker/biker campsite rules were regarding multiple-day stays (the main point is to give non-motorized travelers a guaranteed place to stay as they’re passing through an area, rather than a low-cost way to explore a park), but at least at Smith, they said we could pay for two nights, and then come back and pay for our third. Three nights sleeping in a cathedral of redwoods for $30 total ($5 per person per night) sounds like highway robbery, on our part!

For our first day off I figured we’d just take a walk over from the campground to world-class Stout Grove, like the whole family did in 2012, only to learn that the bridge we took across the Smith River is only there for the summer. So we just did a walk around the campground, which is really a world-class hike all on its own.

Redwoods are tall.
Redwoods are wide.
Redwoods are expressive.

Otherwise the day passed quickly with our routines of cooking and eating. Our huge campsite made everything easy, especially with the bear box. Having a big protected place to keep all our stuff that normally gets strewn all across the picnic table is so convenient, and the top serves as a secondary table, and this one could even shelter stuff beneath it. I say that all campsites should have one, even if they’re in Iowa, miles from the nearest bear!

Hiker/biker campsite ‘E’

Pizza dinner (with spinach salad and red wine) made on the camp stove, was even better than our craved carry-out pizza a few nights ago!

Camp pizza!



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3 responses to “Hiouchi, CA”

  1. Kenneth Gregie Avatar
    Kenneth Gregie

    I would’ve loved to see the woodpecker that made that hole in the redwood!
    Those redwoods have to be one of the most beautiful things on this whole planet-I bet the aroma is wonderful too, no?

    1. neil Avatar

      Again, you were somehow a couple days ahead of us. While the aroma in the big groves was certainly pleasant, it wasn’t until we were riding on the Avenue of the Giants that we were just like “this smell everywhere is incredible!” I don’t know if it’s because it was wetter in there when we went through than in previous groves, or just the different forest, but it was definitely a whole new level.

  2. Swati Saxena Avatar
    Swati Saxena

    The woods seem incredibly beautiful! Hope the rest helped Rett’s hip (I’m behind on reading – I shall find out!).

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