Far Out Flora

Trees of Mystery

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Paul Bunyon, Babe, and Megan.

Paul Bunyan, Babe, and Megan.

We left Eureka and headed north to Klamath CA…where you can find tons of Coast Redwood trees (Sequoia sempervirens)…and a giant Paul Bunyan with Babe.  Welcome to one of our fave roadside attractions, Trees of Mystery.  Megan is standing next to the anatomically correct Blue Ox to give you some sense of scale.  BTW, Paul Bunyan is 49 feet tall.

We said...LISTEN!

We said...LISTEN!

As you enter, you’re enticed to press all sort of buttons to listen to stories, ehem…lectures, about Paul Bunyan.

Candelabra tree.

Candelabra tree.

This fallen redwood is pretty cool.  Just to the right of the sign, you can see three new redwood trees growing up from this fallen tree over the trail.  Basically, the tree fell over which caused it stress.  This triggered the burls in the bark to start growing a new tree.  Presto…the tree survives.

Cathedral Tree.

Cathedral Tree.

The Cathedral Tree is another example how tenacious the redwood can be.  There once was a redwood that fell over.  New growth sprouted from the root base and burls.  A bunch of these new trees grew together in a circle, a total of 9 above, and the parent tree (the one that fell in the middle) has since rotted away.  They estimate that these 9 tree that make up the Cathedral are about 800 years old.

Skytrail Lift.

Skytrail Lift.

There’s even an aerial lift that will take you from the bottom of the trail up to the top of the hill.  Even on a rainy day, it makes for some great views.

Chainsaw sculptures.

Chainsaw sculptures.

There are a lot of chain-sawed sculptures all over the place.  Here’s 3 of about 20 that were depicting the story of Paul Bunyan.  Each of these guys are made from a solid piece of redwood (ahhh…back when it was cool to cut down big trees?).

Pooped Logger (and hiker).

Pooped Logger (and hiker).

Kenyon Kaiser chainsawed this sculpture called the Pooped Logger.  Nice spot to stretch out the legs.

Signs, signs...and more signs....

Signs, signs...and more signs....

So is has this been a problem in the past?

The Lady Bird Johnson Grove.

The Lady Bird Johnson Grove (see Matti in red?)

Before hitting the Trees of Mystery, early morning we stopped by the Lady Bird Johnson Grove.  We heard it’s pretty cool, and was not disappointed.  It’s hard to decide who has the bigger stand of Coast Redwoods…this place or the Ave of the Giants.  Take a peak above.  Can you spot Matti in the red jacket?

Ladybird Johnson Grove.

Ladybird Johnson Grove.

By car, Ave of Giants has it.  But by foot, Ladybird Johnson Grove takes the cake.  Our trip ended, and Megan won our ‘who could find gnarliest Redwood tree’ contest.

Far Out Flora

7 Comments

  1. Wow how incredibly beautiful there! I wish we had trees like that in texas. The wooden sculptures are fun too :)

  2. The bodies of giants. A few grow in our neighborhood, and they are baby bonsai compared to those.

  3. I love the spots where you can just park along a road and go walk amongst the redwoods. Just a few hundred feet from your car you suddenly feel like you have been transported to a different world.

  4. that was so fun!!! matti in the red jacket really put it all in perspective. it’s been a while since i hung out with those giants. thanks!

  5. Thanks for this. We’ve passed through here many times on our way north for camping and such. Somehow we’ve never stopped to check it out. I love the signage! I always thought the mystery trees had to do with the unusual canopy of trees over the road right before you get to Paul Bunyun figure. I often forget how old these tress are. It’s truly amazing.

  6. Oh my wow, this place looks like so much fun! I wanna go there! It’s fantastic. Those trees are immense and amazing.

  7. Those are so pretty huge blue balls on that there ox! (or at least, one, and at least, given the anatomical-correctness I’m assuming that’s what it is….).
    Between the blue ox and the tree molesting signs and the pooped logger, you guys have some great finds here!

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