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“Awesome short hike” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Fern Canyon

Fern Canyon
Redwood National Park, Near Orick, California, CA Located within Redwood National Park
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Ranked #100 of 3,932 Attractions in California
Type: Canyons, Outdoors
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Attraction details
Owner description: This secluded canyon, home to many ferns, makes for an interesting hike.
Chandler, Arizona
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“Awesome short hike”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2013

The drive in on a small dirt road is neat in itself driving through the redwoods. A small 8 dollar fee to park and then a short .5 mile round trip hike was very site filled with a large canyon covered in ferns around the top you can see into a field that had several large elk in it grazing. We also walked out to the beach from the same spot but got a little wet getting to it as their is a sort of marshland between the parking lot and beach.

Visited June 2013
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85 reviews from our community

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English first
Redding, California
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
“Absolutely Amazing”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2013

I had seen photos of this place from friends that had visited but they were nothing compared to seeing this amazing spot in person. First, you must know, It is an 8 mile drive over a rough dirt/gravel road to get here. There are also 2 creeks that you must drive through. There was just about every kind of car possible so you can make it, just take it slow and watch out for the crazy folks that want to drive fast.

On the way to the canyon we saw a huge bull elk munching on the grass and on the way back to Eureka we saw a herd of Elk by the Red School House. Certainly worth stopping there as well.

Back to the hike: There are a bunch of trails with varying degrees of difficulty. The most popular route is also the shortest at just over a mile round-trip. We enjoyed hiking up the canyon itself and then completing the loop by walking the trail above the canyon on the way back. You will get your feet wet so bring hiking boots or shoes you don't mind getting wet. Due to the rough terrain and slippery rocks, I recommend close toed shoes or boots as opposed to sandals or flip-flops. Be sure to stop for lots of photos and take your time.

That is about all I have to say as it is very hard to describe this location. You have to see it for yourself.

Note: There is a fee to enter the park but, if you have a national park pass, it will get you in. There is also a discounted rate for seniors. Finally, if you are a senior, I highly recommend you purchase a "Senior Pass" from the National Park Service. "A $10.00 lifetime pass that provides access to more than 2,000 recreation sites managed by five Federal agencies, with up to 100% of the proceeds being used to improve and enhance visitor recreation services." http://www.store.usgs.gov/pass/senior.html

Visited June 2013
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Sacramento, California
Top Contributor
292 reviews 292 reviews
76 attraction reviews
Reviews in 78 cities Reviews in 78 cities
84 helpful votes 84 helpful votes
“Amazing canyon, fun creek hopping”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 3, 2013

Gorgeous canyon full of amazing ferns (as named). We hiked from our campsite in Elk Prairie and then along the beach for about a mile. Loved rock and log hopping across the creek up the canyon. Water is cold - either be prepared for wet and cold feet or have on waterproof hiking boots. There is another path above the creek without having to trek through the water. You can keep hiking up the Irvine trail to head back to the Elk Prairie campground. This route would take you about 11-12 miles.

There is also a road that takes you down to the Fern Canyon trailhead so the trip is only about 1 mile. There is some uphill, but it is doable.

Visited May 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Simpsonville, South Carolina
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
17 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
“Didn't want to stop”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 16, 2013

This place was too cool. Husband tried to keep his shoes dry. Ha! I just waded through. Not many "bridges" in early Spring. Hard to know when the canyon "stops". We kept wanting to see what was around the next bend....and then the next. No elk in the meadow when we first came in, but there were 2 next to the road when we came around a curve before the camping area. The meadow was full of elk when we came back out. Guess it was the time of day. So close to car there is no need for zoom lens. Early reviews mentioned the gate sometimes being closed. We called the park ranger for additional info.(707-465-7765) Great area for birding if you are into it.

Visited April 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chico, CA
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
12 attraction reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
“Whatever you're expecting, it's better”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2013

I could not believe now great this place was. We went with a large group of about 15 with ages 2 through 55. The second we pulled in, there was a large herd of elk right next to the parking lot. Such an amazing glimpse of nature. The walk was one of the beautiful things I have ever seen. Banana slugs everywhere, little water trickles down the canyon walls. Great little log paths and boards to walk on. I recommend wearing shoes you're okay with getting wet. The trail is easy and takes about an hour with a leisurely pace (stopping to look at plants, touch slugs, take pics, etc). It is definitely not something you would want to race through. This is a magical place for children. I didn't trust my husband's description of this place's beauty until I saw it for myself. It was the highlight of my trip, and you won't regret this experience.

Visited August 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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