The coast redwood trees found at Redwood National and State Parks regularly live for 600 years, but they are known to grow for up to 2,000 years! The parks are home to black bears which feed on the huckleberry, blackberry, and salmonberry bushes there. Open prairie lands and rivers can be found around the redwoods and Douglas-fir in the forest. Besides black bears, wildlife include the northern red-legged frog, banana slugs, grey whales, and sea anemones. Plus, 37 miles of California coastline form the park’s western boundary.
When planning to hike at the park, choose your trails based on your ability and the distance you want to cover. Choose to hike through the forest, in the canyon, or along the coastline. The Hiouchi Trail, found in Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, is a two-mile trail that offers hikers some of the best scenic views of Smith River, especially during late summer and fall because of the flora and wildlife that is attracted to that area. Be sure to dress in layers as the temperature usually varies between 40- to 60-degrees Fahrenheit. Bring rain gear too, especially during the months of October through April. Summer months are often dry and foggy.
Redwood National and State Parks (which merged in 1994) are open year-round, 24-hours a day. The hours for the visitors centers vary with the seasons and holidays, but are usually open around 9 am and close at 4 pm (check the website for specific hours). No fee is required for park entrance, and permits for backcountry camping are free.