the redwoods of california / by Maranie Staab

the redwoods are as magical as people say that they are. after driving the near 18 hours from glacier national park the previous day, i woke, having pitched my tent about a mile from the entrance to the park -- i knew that i wanted to get in at first light. having arrived late the previous night, the trees still shrouded in darkness, i really didn't know what to expect. the morning was damp and the combination of sunlight and mist had traffic driving at 5 mph as everyone tried, impossibly, to take it all in.

the sun burned off the mist within the hour, but those first moments remained with me for the next 12 hours as i hiked and sat among those giant majestic beauties.

as mentioned in my previous post, i recently returned from a several week road trip in which i camped and hiked my way through many of our nations national parks. i am no landscape photographer, but i want to share some of what i saw over the course of those few weeks. my hope is that each of you makes or takes the time to see these places for yourself. in almost every instance, i found that a photograph did not do what i saw justiceā€¦ the reason? the reason is that though the photo may visually show what was before my eyes, it is absent the feeling of wonder and awe that is felt when we recognize the beauty of the natural world.