After Monterey we traveled up the coast to the Santa Cruz area.
The park office was closed, but they had our check-in documents waiting for us and we settled into our site, which worked well for us.
We liked our site, though many of the sites in the park are small and close together. Some, however, have a nice view of the San Lorenzo river.
Felton is a nice little town nestled in the redwoods about 3 miles from Santa Cruz. In this area, we like to visit Henry Cowell State Redwood Park, Big Basin Redwoods State Park, and Roaring Camp & Big Trees Narrow Gauge Railway. Unfortunately, Big Basin was closed due to a fire in the fall, Roaring Camp was closed due to COVID, and Henry Cowell was too busy this weekend for our taste.
Instead, we stopped by the Felton Covered Bridge, which they say is the tallest in the country, and then went for a hike on the coast. As we approached the bridge, we heard some really good bluegrass and country music. Some musicians had setup inside and the music really added to the atmosphere.
We had been wanting to stop at Wilder Ranch State Park for some time, and this was the perfect weekend for it, with cool, clear weather and light crowds.
We took the Old Cove Landing Trail, a 2.5 mile loop by the coast and we absolutely loved the hike!
We walked along the limestone bluffs, listening to the waves crash below, and watching the sea birds fly by.
As we rounded each cove, we were amazed at the rugged beauty of the coastline.
If you look closer, you can see two sea caves and a beach full of seals.
You can see why this is a choice spot for the seals.
Of course there are beaches for humans at Wilder Ranch, too.
On our way back to the parking lot, we passed a very fragrant farm growing organic rosemary. It was cool to see this place still used as a working farm, just as when Mr. Wilder started the farm in the 1800’s.
The homestead is located along Wilder Creek, and as we walked through the grounds we could just imagine life here at that time.
The beach was as beautiful as ever and we can’t wait to visit again when the State Parks open up again for camping.
We had a great visit to the Santa Cruz area and look forward to returning again soon. We feel very blessed to live close by to wonderful Bay Area destinations like this.
Al & Deb