If you have ever been to the Redwood forests of the American Northwest, then you know how incredible it is to be among such majestic and ancient trees. If you haven’t yet visited, you must.
For those who have been, it may surprise you to know that fewer than 120,000 acres, or 5 percent, of the original redwood forest remains today. This precious forest is what is known as the “old growth” Redwood Forest, with trees that reach high up into the 500′ range and taller, many as wide as a small house.
Though there are so few areas of true old growth remaining, there are approximately 1.5 million acres of young, previously logged, Redwood forest. Through careful restoration, these younger forests are attaining old-growth characteristics, healing the damage of the past and allowing wildlife communities to return and thrive once again. There are a number of great opportunities to life amidst these vibrant and aging forests, so that you can enjoy one of nature’s most special places.
There are also many places where you can go and visit both the younger forests and original old-growth forests. In fact, there are about 340,000 acres (half the size of Rhode Island) in publicly owned Redwood forests. These exist as numerous conservation areas and national and state parks, mostly in Northern California. The Muirwood is the closest such place to visit the ancients, located just north of San Francisco, and has a well improved boardwalk displaying many incredible coastal Reds (the tallest and thinner of the two varieties of Redwoods).
If you are looking into purchasing some land in the Redwoods, you should know that the value of redwood forestland and surrounding landscapes varies widely depending on the location, the value of the timber, and competing land uses (e.g. potential for vineyard or housing developments). You may wish to consider things such as proximity to urban areas or amenities, school districts, or population density when looking into what is available.
One thing is for sure, if you are called to own in the Redwoods, know that it is a special and limited opportunity. In cases like this, its best not to live in the world of Coulda, Shoulda or Woulda, and instead to live in the Did. Best of luck, and look for future articles on specific lot locations within the Redwood Forests.