Trip · 3-day backpacking trip
For · Friends and first-time backpackers
Vibe · Moderate and fun
Distance · 16 miles round trip and 692 feet of elevation gain
Permits · Yes, apply online for a Redwood Creek Gravel Bar permit and a Tall Trees Day Use Permit (during the summer)
Drive · 6.5 hours from SF
Ideal dates · June to September
Pets · Welcome at certain campgrounds, but not on trails
Redwood National and State Parks (RNSP) preserves some of the most majestic forests on Earth. It's home to ancient coast redwoods which can grow up to 360+ feet tall (imagine a 35-story skyscraper!) and live up to 2,500 years old. These towering beauties are why Redwood National Park is designated as a UN World Heritage Site. Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, Del Norte Coast Redwoods State Park, and Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park are also part of the joint national-state park partnership. Thank the Save the Redwoods League; they're a big reason why we have 133,000 acres of redwood groves to camp and frolic in today.
Official Redwood Creek Camping Guide
Main image credit: N/A
The CA Department of Parks and Recreation partnered with the National Park Service in 1994 to preserve RNSP: the four-park ecosystem we have today
Thousands of years ago, the Tolowa, Yurok, Chilula, Wiyot, and Karok tribes lived in the North Coast region. The Yurok had around 55 villages and 2500+ inhabitants at one point
When logging began in the 1850s, there were over 2 million acres of redwood forests, but by the 1960s, nearly 90% of all original redwoods were gone
Don't leave the car without a first aid kit. Stuff happens out in the wild and you always want to be prepared.
They're expensive, but you can lean on these bad boys for river crossings and navigating all kinds of terrain.
Light as a feather and versatile enough to use for running, camping, and other nighttime activities.
It's a heavier, bulkier pillow for ultralight backpackers, but you're guaranteed a good night's sleep.
Add up to 14 degrees of warmth and keep your sleeping bag nice and clean with this mummy liner.
Handmade in Seattle, Washington, this sleeping bag is pricey, but you can count on it lasting for years.
A spacious sleeping bag that will help you stay warm for spring, summer, and fall camping.
Winner of the REI Editor's Choice Award, this bag is warm and light, coming in a little over three pounds.
This pack weighs two pounds, has 7 pockets, and has a built-in seat pad, but it can only carry up to 30 pounds.
If you're an experienced backpacker, this is the lightest full-size, full-featured, frameless pack made.
You won't be saving money, but you'll save space and weight with these camp sandals.
These comfortable, breathable, quick drying undies are designed for surviving long treks.
Made with 60% merino wool, these pricey socks are guaranteed to last a lifetime.
Lightweight, grippy, and breathable shoes made for navigating all kinds of trails and terrain.
These down pants will keep you and your legs warm in the chilliest of nights.
Never dig around your pack to find some hand sanitizer. Instead, hang this one on the outside of your pack.
Whether it's coffee or cocoa, bring a silicone mug like this one into the wild. Your tummy will thank you.
Don't let the backcountry stop you from enjoying a hot, quality drip coffee in the morning.
This lightweight pot is for backpackers who want to enjoy warm and cold soaked meals.
These bamboo utensils are designed for the backcountry, and conveniently comes with a travel pouch.
A popular, pricier backpacking stove that's an ounce heavier, but is reliable in the wildest envrionments.
Add a little magic to your experience by hanging these twinkling lights around your tent every night.
Leave your backpacking pack at camp, and use this sleek, compressible pack for day hikes.
Feel fresh, clean, and renewed after each hike with these thick, durable, aloe-infused wet wipes.
The more you backpack the lighter your shelter becomes, and the lighter it is, the more expensive it can be.
You'll always need to bring your hiking poles to use this tent, but it only weighs a little over two pounds.