You don’t have to be into the up-and-down rhythm of Rellim Ridge Trail for long before massive redwood stumps bear witness to its logging road past and sprawling branches of Sitka spruces highlight the look of its newer woods.
Still, considering its history, the trail that basically connects Howland Hill Road to Hamilton Road doesn’t give up its secrets easily. Take the “panoramic views of Crescent City” promised in a Redwood National Park Trail Guide. Second-growth redwoods now pretty much block those westward vantage points.
In addition to the old-growth stumps (some of which still bear loggers’ marks) the width of the trail is further evidence of the timber harvesting that began a century and a half ago. Look closely and you’ll occasionally see signs of old fencing from the logging companies’ cattle and sheep-raising ventures.