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Stay at Fern River Resort – Feels like a Summer Camp

09 | 09 | 2019

Nestled behind Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park, just off the ever meandering highway 9, lives Fern River Resort. Fern River is a charming gathering of cabins in the redwoods fit for large family vacations, weddings, or even just a romantic getaway for two. Fern River Resort was founded in 1929, years after a boulder containing…

Abandoned Lime Kilns in Santa Cruz County

08 | 21 | 2019

If you’ve ever hiked in the Santa Cruz Mountains, you may have wandered upon these abandoned stone structures. The grey bricks decaying over years of neglect, the bright green moss reclaiming their surfaces, the iron gates rusted beyond mobility. The old Lime Kilns in Santa Cruz County are the remnants of what was once a…

Bouldering at Castle Rock State Park

08 | 01 | 2019

Rock climbing. Over 4.6 million people tried this sport in 2015 and the numbers have only increased in the last few years. If you’re one of the newly converted rock climbing enthusiasts in the area, you should definitely check out bouldering at Castle Rock State Park. California is known for its granite, but Castle Rock is…

Best Spots to Camp This Summer

06 | 28 | 2019

It’s officially summertime in the Santa Cruz Mountains! The summer sun is drying everyone out after a rainy spring, the flowers are in full bloom, and those shady hiking trails have never looked so inviting. With the UCSC students out of town and the locals reclaiming the area, many people are looking around for summer…

Quail Hollow: Santa Cruz Mountains Shangri-La

06 | 12 | 2019

Located between Ben Lomond and Zayante, Quail Hollow Ranch County Park sits in a small, amphitheater-shaped valley ringed by sandy, teardrop-shaped ridges. At roughly 300 acres, it is home to a startlingly diverse array of plant communities, including revitalized grasslands, rare Santa Cruz Sandhills, and a mysterious pygmy redwood forest. From Awaswas hunter-gatherers to influential…

Land of Medicine Buddha and the Eight Verses Trail

06 | 02 | 2019

Land of Medicine Buddha. The name evokes images of misty mountain peaks, pristine waterfalls surrounded by prayer flag wrapped trees, and silent orange-clad monks wandering hallways of simple yet dramatic temples. If that’s what you’re picturing, you’re pretty close to correct. The Land of Medicine Buddha, based in the Santa Cruz Mountains, is an environmentally…

The Santa Cruz Sandhills: Windows into the Miocene

05 | 23 | 2019

In between Bonny Doon and Scotts Valley, small windows into the Miocene Epoch pock the Santa Cruz Mountains. At first glance, they might be easy to dismiss — barren stretches of sand occupied by hardy, arid chaparral scrub or pine. Yet look a little closer, perhaps as you hike…

The Santa Cruz Wine Experience

02 | 25 | 2019

It’s organic––of wine, relationships, and terroir When I’d mentioned to family and friends that I would be taking a wine tour with The Santa Cruz Experience on a weekend when Santa Cruz faced yet another heavy rain, everyone said the same thing, “That’s a perfect way to spend a rainy day!” Indeed. The drizzly day began…

World and Wilderness Youth Leadership Development

02 | 22 | 2019

Looking for the right blend of nature engagement, educational mentorship, and most importantly, fun for your youth? Then it may be time for them to enter the WYLD; World & Wilderness Youth Leadership Development. Offering programs from Orange County to Santa Cruz, WYLD is a growing program that offers guided adventures in some of California’s…