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California & Oregon National Parks touir

Old May 22nd, 2016, 03:45 PM
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California & Oregon National Parks touir

We are flying into Medford, OR, to do a trip to Redwoods, Lassen, and Crater Lake National Parks. My wife and I love to do hiking and are not afraid to do strenuous hikes. We are planning at least 10 days to do this but we would like some ideas of places to stay and how long we should spend at each park. As of now we plan to go to Redwoods first and stay in Cresent for the first night after we fly into Medford. We then plan to work our way down the Redwoods and stay in Eureka for a couple of days thinking it will take about 3 day to explore and do the major hikes in Redwoods. We then plan to drive and stay in Redding to explore Lassen National Park. Is 2 days enough to see the major sites in Lassen? Then we are heading up to Crater Lake but stopping at Lava National Monument for a 1/2 day before, with luck, staying at the Crater Lake lodge. How long should we stay at Crater Lake? We plan to do this trip this Sept.
Finally, we would like some recommendations on what hikes we should do at each park while on this trip.
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Old May 22nd, 2016, 04:11 PM
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When is this trip . . . just time for a quick comment right now: I personally would not stay in Crescent City and especially not in Eureka. There are lots better options.

Like here http://www.requainn.com instead of Crescent City.

And instead of Eureka -- either in Ferndale or Trinidad.
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Old May 22nd, 2016, 04:12 PM
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You might want to take the detour off US 199 on the way to Crescent City and go to the Oregon Caves National Monument.
Check the National Park website for hikes in Redwood NP.
Try for a stay in Mt. Shasta instead of Redding.
Lassen is my least favorite of the National Parks I have been to. If you can't get a stay in a room at the Crater Lake Lodge, try for something at the Prospect Hotel.
Sadly the Cleetwood trail down to the dock in Crater Lake NP will be closed for construction. There will be no boat tours after August 15. https://www.nps.gov/crla/learn/news/newspaper.htm
There is a trail in the SE quadrant of Crater Lake Np to see the pinnacles. This is something that more than 90% of the visitors miss.
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Old May 22nd, 2016, 05:34 PM
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I like Lassen NP-- you can get to 10,000 feet in a relatively easy hike, and the Bumpass Hell hike has cool (not literally!) geothermal features. You could do these two hikes and more in two days.

If you can make it work with your overnight stays, there is a wonderful (literally!) hike at Mount Shasta, the South Gate Meadows trail, that would only take a couple of hours.

My favorite Crater Lake hike is to Garfield Peak, the highest point along the rim.
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Old May 22nd, 2016, 06:44 PM
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Another recommendation for Requa Inn.
Up the road from the inn you will come to the Klamath River Overlook where the Klamath empties into the ocean. There are frequently whales feeding in the area.
From there we did a 3 mile hike to Hidden Beach. We had friends picking us up there so did not have to walk back. You might be able to arrange a shuttle- don't know. But even if you don't do the whole hike, the overlook is fun to visit. There is a shelter down the hill from the parking lot for better viewing.

Hwy 138 between Roseburg and Crater Lake has a lot of waterfall hikes. Some are really just short walks, some longer. Watson Falls, Susan Falls and Tokatee Falls are some favorites.

I enjoyed staying at the Trinidad Inn close to the town of Trinidad as another stop.
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Old May 22nd, 2016, 09:14 PM
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For our trip in September the Requa Inn is fully booked. Currently I have reservations in the Crescent Beach Motel which is right on the beach about a mile south of town. The location gets high marks on the review sites. Some friends stayed there last year and thought it was fine.

I'll keep an eye on the Requa, which does look great, but the Crescent Beach Motel could be an OK option for the northern redwoods.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 06:20 AM
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If you can take a full day for Crater Lake, do! Not knowing when in September you are coming, if the boat tours are still going on there, definitely do that. Tickets sell out, so buy them online once you decide. The trail from the parking lot down to the boat dock is a mile and about 700 ft elevation loss. We have done it many times, with little kids to grandparents, and everyone loved it. Some people do huff and puff on the way up if they are not used to hiking, but there are benches along the way if needed. The boat ride gives a completely different perspective and Rangers are on the boat and have so much information. It really is a highlight!

You can also take the trolley around the rim, which is nice so that you can sit back and enjoy and not worry about the drive.

Crater Lake Lodge tends to book up a year in advance, so if you do not have reservations keep calling daily as there are always cancellations. I would have a plan B though.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 06:28 AM
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Oh -- I see now you are traveling in Sept. That will be the VERY best time of the year on the coast and in the Redwoods.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 04:01 PM
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If you have time between your Medford arrival and Crescent City overnight, take Howland Hill Road off Hwy 199 in Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park to Stout Grove, then continue to CC. It's unpaved and sometimes narrows between colossal trees, but it's up there with the best redwood groves.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 06:08 PM
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I agree that is a wonderful road -- but taking a rental car on unpaved roads is almost always against the rules.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 06:23 PM
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mms the last day to take a boat trip on Crater lake this year will be August 14. The Cleetwood Trail down to the dock will have construction starting on August 15 in the morning.
The next trip of the boat will be in spring 2017.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 06:43 PM
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tomfuller--Oh wow, that is a full month earlier! Thanks for the heads up
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