In my experience, the hardest thing about the Redwoods National Parks was getting there, I planned to meet my brother and his kids there in Spring 2000 ... but Covid jumped onto the scene, and the parks closed. After the pandemic closures abated, I hoped to go with my husband, but West Coast wildfires closed that area in in late summer 2000. Finally, in the summer of 2021 conditions allowed us to meet my brother and family there for several days of tree hugging and neck-crimping gazing.
|and a separate picture
for the tops!
at Elk Prairie in
Prairie Creek Redwoods
|Accesible restroom --
except for the threshold
and the loose gravel!
adjoining a soft surface). And the visitor center at Prairie Creek State Park is indeed accessible -- once you get to it, which entails going up a short yet steep bank.
|ADA campsite across from
the field of elks
|Cal-Barrel Road in Prairie
Creek Redwoods SP
Even those not wishing to hike could take a gentle stroll or roll underneath the trees and feel their majesty. In fact, one could drive on Cal Barrel Road or on the Newton B Drury Parkway and see and feel the giant trees without even exiting the car.
Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, at the north end, also offers a multitude of choices for visitors with wheelchairs. In fact, it was really a coin-toss as to whether we camped there or in Prairie Creek. This
park also boasts accessible picnic grounds and waysides, redwood groves, campsites, and trails (see below), as well as drives along the big trees. such as the Howland Hill Road.
The Redwoods parks offer excellent trails for hiking with wheelchairs. Several paved, boardwalk, and dirt trails are firm, wide, and well-maintained, with good thresholds. Of course, some trails have gentle to serious slope, and there is some cross-slope on hilly areas.
Save the Redwoods has done an outstanding job of including disabled visitors in its marketing. In fact, they have actually teamed up with the Disabled Hikers to publish a guide to hiking in the CA redwoods for those with disabilities.
In Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, Redwood Access Trail (.7 mile ow), Revelation Trail (.3 mile loop), Foothill/Prairie Creek Trail (2.3 mile loop) and the Big Tree Wayside/Circle Trail (.16 mile) are all accessible.
Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, the Simpson Reed-Petersen Memorial Trails (.93 mile loop) and the Leiffler Trail (.88 mile ow) are accessible.
|Entrance to Lady Bird
blog posts from a hiker in a power chair who was able to go down and up, but hikers in manual chairs will definitely need strong assistance.
|I frequently encountered
roots in trails;
almost all could be
I found the trees and forests magical, the cool temperature lovely, the crowds manageable, and the accessibility surprisingly good. I have a feeling that recent publications for disabled hikers make accessibility decisions even easier and worth a return trip!
For more info on this area, the following websites may provide helpful information:
Many people also visit the redwood trees farther south, where there is a famous drive-through tree, as well as several accessible hikes. The following websites may provide helpful information: