Up the Sea-to-Sky trail to the waterfall beyond.
It seems an odd and recurring coincidence that whenever we go riding through forests, it
always has a way of being an overcast day. I've been wanting to fill a memory card with sunny forest shots on the Canon,
but for now would have to wait yet another day. Anyway, there were rumors of some
waterfalls at the end of the Sea-to-Sky trail in Big Basin State Park, and so we brought our bikes
down to have a look.
The trail follows a hyperbolic trajectory, starting out flat for awhile winding along the length of a wet valley.
Then there's some climbing, up to a rack where you can lock your bike.
It's hiking from there, up increasingly steep singletrack passing Berry Falls,
until it's practically stairs the rest of way alongside Silver and Golden Cascade Falls until you
reach the upper lid of the basin.
Click to expand
From Waddell Beach, the Sea-to-Sky Trail begins through a broad meadow as the valley opens to the coast.
The Spring bloom is reaching maturity fairly late this year, but there was plenty of color in the fields beyond.
To bad there wasn't much sun to show it off.
In the beginning the trail is nice and dry, and passes through meadows now colorful with the spring bloom.
The trail stays pretty flat for awhile as it moves alongside Waddell Creek into the redwood forests...
...and passing by the wet riparian woodlands.
The main trail crossing the creek!
Is that it for the ride?
Neither of us were in the mood for a stream crossing such as this, which was deeper than it looks and
the water was moving swiftly.
We were at the shore here for a couple of minutes wondering what we were going to do.
Wait a minute, is that a bridge upstream?
The first shot was just a random Kodak moment, one of many along this trail.
Not far up the path we ran into an orange-bellied newt. We found several more like him as the trail continued up the falls.
Here is where we had to lock our bikes and start hiking. The second shot was taken while crossing the stream on a very thin
bridge, shaped like a roof gutter and about as rickety.
Finally, Barry Creek Falls.
This is a shot of the falls, a composite of three different pictures.
This was a big waterfall, and that's a full-size fir lying in the pool-- not just a branch or twig that some
kid put in there.
Almost a mile upstream from Berry Falls come the rumble of silver falls ahead.
The trail begins as wooden steps leading up toward Silver Falls, then
wet a mossy stone rises alongside the falls themselves.
Here the trail is passing along the wire. What trail?!? Watch your step, especially if you're holding a camera!
The top offers an interesting vantage point over the falls.
Not far up the trail is Golden Cascade falls. Combined with Silver Falls and a few smaller ones in between,
it forms a series of elegant white rapids falling a couple hundred feet down the mountain.
The passing rains enriched the deep and varied shades of green,
and the cloud cover reduced the shadow creating a subdued grey effect that makes you feel like and elf
walking through the pages of a Tolkien novel. We continued beyond Golden Cascade Galls to the Sunset Camp
where the dense forest thinned to Ponderosa pine and views of surrounding ridges and valleys could be seen.
Briefly the cloud cover broke and we stood under
blue skies admirring the scenery before racing nightfall back. We reached the beach just
in time for sunset.
(b. May 4, 2003)
Back to Santa Cruz.