By | Matthew Hable
Humboldt County has a reputation for its incredible amount of towering redwood trees and rugged coastal beauty, but these are far from the only nature sights in the county. Many newcomers also discover that Humboldt has even more to offer in the nature department, including lagoons, rivers and marshes.
Fortunately, much of our environment is easily accessible through scores of trails. Browse through the free AllTrails app and look up either Redwood National and State Parks or Humboldt Redwoods State Park to find numerous options, including Trillium Falls and Bull Creek Flats. Don’t have a car? No problem. The Arcata Community Forest is near the university, with trail access on 14th and Union Street. Another nearby option is the Arcata Marsh and Wildlife Sanctuary, which offers about five miles of walking and biking paths. Hop on the bus to Trinidad and hike on Strawberry Rock Trail or Trinidad Head Loop. Humboldt County has a wide variety of options for all different kinds of trails.
Center Activities lets students take advantage of fun outdoor and recreational activities as well as affordable gear rentals. In fact, Center Activities is offering a guided tour of Arcata Community Forest on Friday, Sept. 8. Visit humboldt.edu/centeractivities or pick up a catalog around campus for full details.
Hiking is a powerful way to decompress from the the pressures of school and work. We know that digital technologies are woven securely into the fabric of our daily lives and we rely on it to sustain ourselves in the Internet Age. However, connecting with nature provides mental and physical benefits that laptops and smart phones cannot offer. It has the potential to naturally clear the mind, elevate mood, and keep us in shape.
To put it another way, the key to happiness is to establish a balanced habit of screen time and hitting the trails.
Renowned naturalist John Muir once said, “Keep close to nature’s heart… and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.”
Take advantage of Humboldt’s plentiful outdoor offerings. You will be happy you did.