Erin spent this hike in a self proclaimed “Technology Timeout”. After battling wireless internet at a Crescant City cafe and then getting frustrated with our new point and shoot camera, she determined a break from technology was in order.
We spent two nights at the Elk Prarie Campground, part of Prarie Creek State Park campground. Having two consecutive nights in one place was really great and gave us all of Wednesday to explore. We took full advantage spending the morning mountain biking on a single track trail that led us down to the beach and left us with a steep climb back to 101. The afternoon was spent hiking our favorite hike of the trip so far. We wandered through giant redwoods, climbing up so that we were able to actually feel like we were looking down at the forest floor. Of course, these trees grow to be up to 300 feet tall and we were probably 150 feet up so they still towered above us. The hike led us to a fern canyon. I know, real exciting, right? For any Jurassic Park 2 junkies, you may remember this fern canyon from one of the scenes when a guy is getting eaten by little dinos (at least we’re pretty sure that’s what happens). Despite it’s Hollywood fame, it was worth the 5 mile hike in, which we learned once we got to the end we could have driven to. We were pretty spent afterwards.
Today we hit the road early wanting to make it just north of San Francisco. We were driving out of the park, having not yet seen any elk despite camping in the ELK PRARIE campground (the ranger made some smart comment about the elk not giving her their schedule when we asked if there was a time of day they were usually in the meadow), when Erin starts hitting the window (she was driving) exclaiming “ELK, ELK, ELK!” I hadn’t noticed a thing but promptly requested we turn the car around back to the elk. It was worth it! There were about 50 elk, at least 5 of which were bull elk (the ones with the antlers). It was very cool! We decided it was time to leave our viewing spot when the 10 cars and tour bus pulled up behind us and 50 people were on the side of the road, cameras in hand. (As much fun as it would have been to see one of the get charged.)