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Archive 2013 · Another California Trip Advice Request
  
 
JimKied
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p.1 #1 · Another California Trip Advice Request


Hello all. I will be making a trip out to the Sacramento, CA/Oroville, CA area in late spring early summer. It looks as if the earliest I can make it out there will be the second week of June and can probably arrange to be there as late as mid July. More than likely the trip will be 7 days or so. I will be with my wife (non-photographer) and pick up my sister-in-law and then we will go..... where?

I love to hike, but given that I will be with others and given the time limitations, I would likely best choose a few hikes that are in the two/three hour category. Longer day hikes will probably be out of the question given that we will try to cover a lot of territory in a short period of time. Have to keep the ladies satisfied.....

I have always wanted to go up to the north California coast to see the redwoods and the coast, maybe try to get one of those incredible sunset sea stack images that I see in this forum. I had hoped also to try to get my twist on a foggy rhododendron/redwood image, but I think I will be there too late.

I kind of thought that I would try to do a loop, maybe spending a couple 3 days in the coast area and then maybe hitting Crater Lake (never been there), coming back down around Mts. Shasta and Lassen.

Having said all that, I am open to other suggestions/directions that may be closer to Oroville/Sacramento. I have been to Yosemite before, but always with at least 9 million other people there. . I know that my timing is prime tourist season, but I'd love to find some scenic maybe less traveled areas.

I'm hoping that some of you California experts can give me some ideas about whether to go earlier or later in that time frame from a weather conditions perspective as well as natural events, such as wildflower blooming and the like. And also maybe some specific locations (beaches, redwood parks, trails, etc.) along the way. For example, I have heard that Fern Canyon is pretty cool, but I'd really like to hear a photographer say the same thing. What little I can find out about it makes it look like a large gully with ferns growing out the side. But I may have entirely the wrong idea.

So what say you? I'd appreciate any suggestions you may have.

Thanks,
Jim



Jan 17, 2013 at 02:00 AM
stanparker
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p.1 #2 · Another California Trip Advice Request


Not a CA expert, but have spent time in some of the places mentioned. For Crater Lake, early June can still have lots of snow around, may have part of the rim drive still closed. I enjoy it with snow or without. Lassen NP has some good hikes, just not sure whether early June is a problem, I was there later in the summer. Mt Shasta is pretty all year, but June may be too early for much hiking or wildflowers. I'd suggest looking at the NPS web sites for the national parks, they should have weather history info. Then schedule according to your interests.

If you are into waterfalls, there are lots of them on the roads from I-5 to Crater Lake, each requiring fairly short hikes.

You might also research for sea fog along the coast. At times, it can last almost all day.



Jan 17, 2013 at 03:01 PM
Jo Dilbeck
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p.1 #3 · Another California Trip Advice Request


If you can get there, the northern california coast line is a must see if you've never been there. It is about a 3.5-4 hour drive from the Oroville area to the Mendocino/Fort Bragg area (and that's driving at a pretty good clip). Fern Canyon can definitely be worth the trip, but as I recall, it can be difficult to get to.

You will be too late for the phenomenal wildflower bloom on Table Mountain, it is our annual "sight to see". However, hiking around Table Mountain might still be interesting for you if we have a late spring and some water run-off.

Highway 89 through Lassen Park will likely still be closed in late June, I've seen it not open until as late as mid August. However, the northern most stretch of 89 which runs through the little (and I mean little) town of McCloud has 3 waterfalls on it that have about a 5 mile hike that runs along the river between all 3, it would be lovely that time of year. This is the same location as Mt. Shasta as well.

I would pass on Yosemite that time of year since you've already been there, nothing worse than fighting a million tourists. Of course, if you haven't been to Lake Tahoe, that could be a must-see, it's only a few hours from Oro/Sac. Lots of things to see and do up there.

Jo



Jan 17, 2013 at 03:53 PM
JimKied
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p.1 #4 · Another California Trip Advice Request


Jo - if you are talking about the table mountain near Oroville, I had no idea it was a wildflower hotspot. My sister in law ha lived there for many years and she has never mentioned it. It looks very interesting, but as you say, it will be too late this time. Maybe next time.

From what I get so far, it looks like earlier will be best, especially on the north coast. Are there any beaches that you consider better, etc.? And can anyone speak to general weather patterns for early/mid June? Does the fog tend to lift late in the day? Do I have any chance at all of finding rhododendron blooming? What parks are better from a photographer's viewpoint for redwoods?

And yeah! I gravitate to waterfalls like a moth to flame. Will I expect to see the greens that are so characteristic of Washington and Oregon? Any hints? :-).

Appreciate all the help!

Jim








Jan 17, 2013 at 06:22 PM
 

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Dustin Gent
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p.1 #5 · Another California Trip Advice Request


Maybe I am a bit biased, but I wouldn't expect greens or waterfalls in NorCal like that of what we have have in the PNW. Obviously along the northern coast of California, it will be green - like Oregon/WA.

Crater Lakes' North Entrance may well be closed until July - who knows. TripCheck.org is a great website to check for info. You can also take the I-5 to Roseburg and take HWY 138 to HWY 62 and head to either entrance of Crater Lake. By doing this, you pass through some amazing waterfalls. Toketee, Watson, National Creek Falls to name a few. They are on Bryan Swans' website, so you can check them out before making the trek.



Jan 17, 2013 at 06:32 PM
Steve Sieren
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p.1 #6 · Another California Trip Advice Request


You've got some great waterfalls right next to Oroville there are many but you can search for one that suits your time limits. I liked the Devil's Kitchen hike in Lassen. Not crowded at all. I'd check out McArthur Burney Falls and Mossbrea Falls if it's open or accessible, they've gone through some changes rebuilding a new trail so the average person doesn't get hit by the train. I also loved Lavabeds Nat'l Monument.

A few photos from the area

bit.ly/californiacasdia



Jan 17, 2013 at 07:18 PM
Jo Dilbeck
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p.1 #7 · Another California Trip Advice Request


We don't have the vibrant greens like in the PNW unfortunately, but waterfalls we've got! Check out the website "waterfallswest.com". It's a small fee to access it, but well worth the cost of admission. Burney Falls is along highway 89 not far from the McCloud falls I previously mentioned and that one is amazing. Water comes right out of the side of the hill.

Your sister must not be into wildflowers, Table Mountain is the mecca for those seeking the early bloom. If you get to the coast earlier rather than later, you MAY find some rhodies, but I think May is a better time for them.



Jan 17, 2013 at 09:42 PM
TheWengler
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p.1 #8 · Another California Trip Advice Request


I wouldn't expect an great sunsets in the summer, but the north coast beaches are still nice. In 2011 I went to Redwood NP in early July and found most of the rhodies on the ground. Last year I went at the end of May and most of them hadn't bloomed yet. I'd tend to think June might be pretty decent for that type of thing especially when combined with the fog.


Jan 18, 2013 at 01:33 AM





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