Learn Something New Every Day!

Our Winter Trip was nearing the end.  This second to the last day, we were driving from Eureka, California to Sacramento, California.  We knew we would see some mighty redwoods along the way as we started out on Highway 101.  We even drove part of the alternate route labeled Avenue of the Giants, traveling along Eel River and through towering redwoods.

Internet Photo

Avenue of the Giants is a 32-mile portion of Old Highway 101 that is surrounded by the Humboldt Redwoods State Park. Humboldt RSP was created in 1921 through the efforts of the Save the Redwoods League that even back then valued the large trees much more alive than dead.  Over the years, through purchase and donation, this state park has grown to nearly 53,000 acres.  Roughly a third of the park (17,000 acres) is old growth redwoods, making it the largest expanse of ancient redwoods in existence.

We did catch glimpses of the Eel River along the road.


As we continued our drive along Highway 101, heading to Highway 20 where we would head east to Sacramento, we noticed an intriguing sign:  Chandelier Drive-Thru Tree.  We just had to explore! This privately owned location in Leggett, California, became the eighth stop on our Winter Trip.

The Underwood Family has privately owned the land since 1922.  In 1937, after the tunnel was cut through the Chandelier Tree, the family opened the tree and its surroundings as a tourist attraction.  For a small fee, tourists can enter the property and enjoy the trees.

After a short drive, one comes to the drive-thru tree.  Throughout the property, there are also places to hike and picnic as well as shop in a little store.

I loved this poem!

But we were also thrilled to notice a fun surprise hiding throughout the redwoods:  wooden carvings. These sculptures—carved with a chainsaw out of redwood—were interspersed throughout the trees, catching tourists by surprise.  There were bears and eagles and deer and squirrels and turtles, and more. Two artists are responsible for these carvings, and they apparently return periodically to add more art.  The two artists are Dayton Scoggins (Artistry in Wood) and Mark Colp (Wooden Creations).

This eagle sculpture is my favorite.

If you have never visited this little tourist attraction, add it to your list of places to see.  It is delightful!

The Goodbye Committee

Not far past this little drive-thru diversion, we picked up Highway 20 en route to our hotel in Sacramento.  As we drove, the temperature dropped, and we even experienced some snow.

Once we drove out of the snow, we saw a rainbow.

Once in the hotel, we heard the news that Highway 20 closed because of the snow that—apparently—kept falling behind us.  The next day, we made it home to Bakersfield, ending a great Winter Trip.

Comments on: "Winter Trip Stop 8: CHANDELIER DRIVE-THRU TREE" (13)

  1. Such beautiful scenes again – A fitting way to wrap up an epic roadtrip through magnificent landscapes!

  2. The opening pic sets the stage. A wonderful image!!!! The first one of the river is awesome! But even those two pics can’t beat the petrified bears. Amazing what nature can do.

  3. Thank you for the memories!! I think I was 10 when the fam drove here from Illinois. I remember the roads were closing at one point because of an inch of snow, and my father telling the cop, “Look @ my plates ‘Illinois’.. I think we can handle an inch” 😉

    • Glad I could spark some memories for you–and thanks for stopping by. And, yes, those from Illinois or anywhere that gets snow on a regular basis can navigate it with much more grace than some here who do not even think they need to slow down. A mountain pass near me is closed at times when snow hits the pass, but more for slick conditions and accidents than too much snow.

  4. Beautiful, majestic journey. The trees are gorgeous, the wood carvings charming. Thank you, Patti, for taking us along.

  5. Barbara Yong said:

    Beautiful. Love the huge trees and the wood carvings. Looks like the perfect way to end a trip.

  6. Loved the trees. Loved the carvings. Great photos.

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