Big Basin Redwoods State Park is one of the most beautiful trails in the Bay Area.

And nearly 2 years after the horrific fires that destroyed much of the park’s ancient beauty…

Signs of life have started to bloom.

According to NBC Bay Area, the California State Parks Department are reopening the park to visitors.

But not fully.

While the park has made great strides in regeneration, there’s still a lot of work to be done.

NBC Bay Area spoke to Chris Spohrer from the State Parks Santa Cruz department:

“All the structures had to removed, burned out vehicles, toxic soils and lots and lots of hazard trees had to come down. So, it’s a very different landscape from what it was, but 30 of the trees are coming back remarkably well.”

The remaining trees and foliage are showing remarkable resilience.

Leaves are re-sprouting on trees.

Grass, mosses, bugs, and flowers are beginning to grow back.

And while it will be some time before the park returns to its’ former beauty…

It’s still totally breathtaking.

The long road to recovery for Big Basin

Photo credit: 3G (2019)

Big Basin is the oldest State Park in California, having been established in 1902.

Some of the redwoods are also some of the eldest in the state.

Photo credit: 3G (2019)

A few of the tall, ancient trees range from 1000 to 1800 years old.

Photo credit: 3G (2019)

And all of that changed in August of 2020.

The devastating CZU Fire burned through an estimated 97% of the structures and park.

Historic structures and plants alike burned.

Thankfully, many of the old growth trees survived the fire.

But they’re not out of the woods yet.

NBC Bay Area quotes Spohrer again:

“I think it’s pretty obvious that a warming and trying climate has exacerbated the intensity and rate of when these fires are happening… To see a fire of this intensity coming through this landscape, which is typically moist, which is typically drippy with fog in August, things are changing.”

Photo credit: 3G (2019)

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