Appropriately named, California's Lost Coast is a stunning 80 mile stretch of rugged shoreline that begins north of Mendocino. Most of the coast land is undeveloped and quite remote . . . it's like stepping back in time.
Our first destination was Glass Beach in Fort Bragg. Fifty years ago, locals used to hurl trash right over the bluffs into this small cove. Once a dumping ground, the beach is now an incredible spectacle of tumbled glass and pottery.
For most our visit, we had the sparkly shore to ourselves- not at all what you'd expect from a California beach. And we were gifted with beautiful weather.
Exploring the Lost Coast by car can be precarious. Undeveloped land means undeveloped roads. We decided to spend one morning driving down Usal Road, which is a narrow and steep dirt road that hugs the coastline.
It took us an hour to drive 6 miles, but we managed to make it to the beach without any car mishaps or car sickness. On the drive, we saw some amazing "candelabra" redwoods, trees that grow multiple trunks.
From the Lost Coast, we drove to the heart of the redwoods. We took a scenic 31 mile highway that led us to groves of giant trees. The fallen tree shown below was 362 ft. tall and 52 feet in circumference. And it was at least 1600 years old when it finally fell in 1991.
Walking amongst these giant trees, I couldn't help but think of Tolkein's talking trees in Lord of the Rings. Ent, after all, means "giant" in Old English. And Ents were considered the oldest living creatures in Middle Earth.
That doesn't make sense to me. But, then again, you are very small. - Treebeard, the oldest Ent, to a hobbit.
Oh, how true that is.