A Walk In The Park
It is summer and it is popularly believed that the sun shines the most over the state of California. For those who love spending days in the outdoors, California’s national parks – Yosemite National Park, Death Valley National Park and Redwood National and State Park, amongst others – offer a plethora of flora and fauna to keep shutterbugs completely occupied.
YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK
Imperial trees, imposing mountains, transluscent waters, and unpolluted snow sheets capture one’s eye at Yosemite National Park. This spread of 1,100 square miles boasts of 95 per cent of sprawling wilderness. When the snow melts, it creates staggeringly beautiful waterfalls; the tallest – Yosemite Falls – stands at a height of 2,425 feet. Rivers initiated by such natural processes make for lazy summer streams. Build a raft and allow the soft currents to take you down a winding trajectory of wilderness.
Yosemite National Park is dotted with many trails. While you can cycle down the special Bike Path for a picturesque ride to the astounding rock formation, El Capitan, the 8.5 mile Panorama Trail is an easy downhill walk. There is also a challenging 5.4 mile loop hike to Vernal Fall and Nevada Fall – an option for the more sporty trekkers.
Rock climbers from around the world fancy a visit to the challenging, granite faced Yosemite Mountain, which towers over a deep valley popular for its cooled plutonic rock formations. In the evening, Yosemite’s Glacier Point is rumoured to show the most charming sunset.
DEATH VALLEY NATIONAL PARK
Lying at 282 feet below sea level is a desert of spilling sand dunes, paradoxically with snow-capped mountains, multi-coloured rock layers, canyons and three-million acres of stone wilderness. Trails in this valley-park are bold, adventurous and exciting. Golden Canyon’s narrow paths take you through interesting badlands that whisper traces of prehistoric fossils. The trail ends at Badwater Road known for its salt flats.
Dante’s View and higher still, Aguereberry Point, are perfect for those who would love a panoramic bird’s eye view of the park. But a visit to the properly preserved, ten beehive-shaped structures is worth the trip.To explore the fauna, hike to its Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes in the early mornings to catch sight of tracks left behind by nocturnal life. You can also camp in the midst of the creatures at night, by tucking yourself safely in a tent.
Tall And Robust
REDWOOD NATIONAL AND STATE PARK
Redwood National and State Park is reported to house the tallest trees on earth. Lapping its feet is an impressive pagination of Roosevelt elk. They spill over to the meadows where one can hope to witness duelling amongst the males in the fall when their crown of majestic antlers stands in pride.
This park is a plethora of vast prairies, oak woodlands, wild riverways, and nearly 40 miles of pristine coastline; a kaleidoscope of wildlife and cultural traditions peek from each bend along its winding paths.
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