The hike to Paradise Meadow in Lassen Volcanic National Park was so pleasant! We were a little early to catch wildflowers in bloom in the meadow, but we did see several along the trail and on the banks of the creek.
There were some steep spots, but it was just enough to get your heart rate up. Even in the first week of July, there were still a couple of mounds of snow that we had to traverse.
The trail follows Hat Creek and the water was rushing from all the snow melt, making for some beautiful little waterfalls. The round-trip was barely three miles and the perfect hike to start off the summer season with.
I really enjoyed this hike and look forward to doing it again soon!
I've got a feeling there are going to be plenty of add-ons to this list because I can think of dozens of things that I love about hiking.
For now, let's start off with five...
1. Nature is ever-changing. The scenery of a place can be drastically different from one season to the next. Wildflowers bloom and then wither and die off. The flow of waterfalls wax and wane depending on the time of year. Fall colors, as well as snow, can transform a place like magic.
2. A sense of freedom. When you're out in the middle of nowhere, you can enjoy the freedom of nature without anyone around. And the excitement of creating your own adventure is the best kind of freedom of all.
3. Getting out of your own head. Everyday stress, constant negativity and nagging problems are forgotten when you're inhaling breath after breath of fresh, clean air. Birds and wildlife--and even the plants and trees--are surviving, scrounging for food, competing for life while you're there to simply enjoy yourself. It's life or death for the wild things of nature and that realization can make your own problems seem that much smaller and insignificant. Hike the trail at your own pace and enjoy every second of it!
4. Opens your eyes to a whole new world. Up until now, you've only ever seen photos and social media posts of these wonderful natural wonders and travel destinations. And now you're out there walking to them on your own two feet and taking your own fabulous photos!
5. Hiking is addictive. Once you finish that first trail, you're already planning the next one! When you realize just how far you can push yourself, the possibilities are endless and you want to #AlwaysBeHiking.
If you're already a seasoned hiker, then this list is nothing new. You already know all about the health benefits of lacing up your hiking shoes and hitting the trail. If you're a newbie like I was last year, then what's stopping you from trying something new and challenging? Open up your search engine and find some hiking trails near you. Take it from me, you won't regret it!
One of my favorite things about nature is watching the clouds float across the sky. Whether they're speeding by or drifting along, there's something so peaceful about these puffs of white fluff up above.
I hope you enjoy this relaxing video of some of the beautiful clouds from our travels...
This little slice of heaven in Alturas, California is never crowded and it's so nice to get out into nature and feel like you have the place all to yourself. Despite my selfish reasons, I'm sharing it anyway because I think it's one of the most beautiful wildlife refuges I've been to in northern California and it deserves some love.
There's a 3 mile auto tour route, a lovely paved walking trail, a viewing blind, and best of all, you can't swing a camera without it landing in a gorgeous spot to snap a photo. We're talking 360 degree views (as you'll be able to see from the video below) and the scenery makes me want to buy a little farm next to the refuge, prop my feet up on the front porch rail, and watch the clouds mosey on by.
The drive from Redding to Alturas is absolutely gorgeous. Since it's way up there in northeastern California and might not be on your road trip itinerary, I made the staggering sacrifice of putting together a little video showcasing the beauty of Modoc. We'll zip through the auto tour around Teal Pond, take a walk on the Kaye Johnson Nature Trail, and cruise down some of the countryside boundary roads. Let's go!
For more photos/videos/info about the birds found at the refuge, visit my birding website Wings and Daydreams. And here is the link to the Modoc NWR website so you can plan your own trip to this Pacific Flyway wildlife oasis.