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Standing taller than a football field is long, the ancient redwoods (Sequoia sempervirens) of California's North Coast can live 2,000+ years. Ride and hike through three different reserves guarded by these amazing sentinels, including the world’s largest remaining old-growth forest. Explore coastal gold-rush provision towns and Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuge. Thrill to the only section of California’s coastline without a major highway - a magical stretch called the Lost Coast.
Meet in Eureka (served by United Airlines). Ride the Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway through old-growth redwoods that top 250+ feet.
Meet us on Day 1 in Eureka (we found it!) United Airlines offers flights into the Arcata/Eureka Airport (airport code ACV) from Crescent City, San Francisco and Sacramento, California and Portland, Oregon. After a shuttle north, ride the Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway through the mammoth redwoods of Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park. Stop for a quick hike to crane your neck at Big Tree, standing over 300 feet tall. It measures 21 feet in diameter and just keeps on growing past its estimated 1,500 years. Sneak a peek at the Pacific Ocean from Patrick’s Point, surrounded by lush ferns and mosses.
Continue the journey south, pedaling through pastoral farmlands and Eureka’s North Jetty on the Pacific.
Ride the scenic drive from Patrick’s Point through Trinidad, then head inland for pastoral farm roads. Spin through Arcata, a one-time gold-rush provisioning stop on the shores of Humboldt Bay and now home to Humboldt State University. Ride over to the North Jetty and relax in the sea breeze. Explore Eureka: the entire town is a state historic landmark with hundreds of Victorian homes. Enjoy the Old Town neighborhood with its charming cafes, bookstores and window shopping. Stay at the oh-so-Victorian Carter House tonight, overlooking Humboldt Bay.
Kayak Humboldt Bay, then ride the South Jetty on to Ferndale.
Kayak Humboldt Bay, one of California’s most pristine wetlands and home to over 316 bird species. After a quick lesson, paddle through archaeological sites, an egret rookery and windswept Cypress trees. After lunch, continue on to historic Ferndale, which posed as the ideal 1950s town for Jim Carrey's movie The Majestic. Enjoy your room at the Victorian Village Inn, which National Geographic Traveler calls'...one of the world's top ten great places.'
Ride Panther Gap and the Lost Coast: spectacular panoramas of rugged outcrops and black sand beaches. Up for a real challenge? Ride 'The Wall.'
Today: ride the “Lost Coast” - the only section of California's coast that doesn't have a major highway. Serene redwood forests lead to beautiful remote valleys. Be surprised by sudden ocean vistas of shimmering blue waters and milk-white beaches. Up for a challenge? Tackle “The Wall” - a hill whose first quarter-mile appears to go straight up, then dishes out an average grade of 18% for over a mile. Reward yourself with the sweeping coastline panoramas as you follow the road back to Ferndale. This optional ride is only 18 miles with fantastic vistas and no traffic. But it does include another 8-mile climb up yet another challenging sweep called the “Endless Hill.” Riders who do it will understand why the locals' “Tour of the Unknown Coast” is billed as California’s toughest century ride. Stay a second night at the Victorian Village Inn.
Bicycle through Humboldt Redwoods State Park today. Meet the Coast Redwoods of the aptly-named Avenue of the Giants. Pedal between the roots of a giant living redwood tree.
Ride through Humboldt Redwoods State Park. Pedal along the banks of the Eel River through ancient redwood forest along the Avenue of the Giants. These magnificent Coast Redwoods can live more than 2,000 years and are the tallest living things on earth, reaching heights of more than 350 feet - taller than a football field is long! Ride your bike through a giant space between the roots of a living redwood. Options today range up to 50+ miles, if you'd like to do them. Tonight: Stay at the historic Benbow Inn.
Explore Bull Creek in Humboldt Redwoods State Park, the largest remaining old-growth redwood forest in the world.
Slow down and wind down with a hike along Bull Creek in Humboldt Redwoods State Park. Savor the quiet serenity of the forest primeval – the largest old-growth redwood forest remaining in the world! Wander through cathedral-like groves for a last lingering look at these majestic trees, then shuttle back to Eureka for your trip home.
As an optional extra, a person traveling solo on any inn-to-inn trip may reserve a room for his or her exclusive use. This will guarantee you a private room and private bath every night. Unlike other tour companies, if you're willing to share a room, there is no extra charge for coming solo, no matter when you sign up for the tour - even if you wind up with a private room by default.