Botanizing the North Fork of the Smith River CANCELLED

Cancelled Covid-19

Photo by Larry Broeker

NOTE: Incorrect course dates were printed in our catalog. The correct dates are Friday – Sunday, May 29-31.

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Instructor: Dana York, M.S.
Dates: Friday-Sunday, May 29-31, 2020
Location: Rock Creek Ranch, Hiouchi, CA
Tuition including camping: $250 Commuter tuition: $190

Naturalist Certificate Credits: 16 hrs.



Cancelled due to Covid-19. Please stay tuned for future programming.

Enter a world of crystal-clear streams, serpentine rock, giant redwoods, carnivorous plants and trails winding past ancient cedars and California lady slippers. The Smith River, which mostly originates in Oregon and flows through Del Norte County in California, is an enchanted place combining beautiful serpentine scenery and downright “weird” plants. On Friday evening, after setting up camp and dining at our home base of Rock Creek Ranch, our instructor will introduce us to some of his favorite hikes along this section of the Smith River. Saturday, we’ll take an easy hike along Stony Creek on the North Fork and meet up with unusual plants including the bog white violet, California butterwort, Del Norte iris and manzanita, Howell’s fawn lily, serpentine sedge, Del Norte willow and inside-out flower. If the creek where we botanize is running low enough, Dana will string a rope bridge across so that we can explore further up the Smith River.

On Sunday, students will experience more serpentine habitat and associated rare plants such as serpentine catchfly and seacoast ragwort along Little Bald Hills Trail. We’ll hike this moderately strenuous trail with frequent stops for botanizing. We’ll finish the workshop with a walk among redwood giants in Stout Grove within Jedidiah Smith State Park.