There were fears for the many trees in California’s oldest state park that were severely ravaged by the wildfires last week. Some of the redwoods there are up to 2,000 years old and among the tallest on our planet. But an Associated Press team found with their own eyes that most redwoods survived the conflagration.
The redwoods in Big Basin Redwoods State Park, about 43 miles south of San Francisco, just might have gone up in flames after no less than 2,000 years.
Many assumed this with pain in their hearts. But yesterday, a reporter and photographer from the AP news agency went into the nature park to ascertain the situation. And look, they came back with good news.
“I can’t say how nice this feels for my peace of mind,” said Laura McLendon, director of the Sempervirens Fund, an environmental movement dedicated to protecting redwood trees and their habitat.
Unfortunately, the historic main building of the nature park has been reduced to ashes. Just like some smaller buildings and camping areas. “But the forest is not gone,” said McLendon.
“It will grow back. Every old redwood I’ve ever seen, both in Big Basin and other parks, bears scars from fires. They have experienced several fires, possibly worse than this one.” The most important thing is that they do not fall over in order to continue to grow.
The tallest tree in the park ever was Mother of the Forest, with a length of just a hundred meters. In a storm, the top broke off, but a new branch sprouted up where the old one had grown. The fallen trees also live on in the others, because they feed them through the soil.
Big Basin opened its doors in 1902. The redwood park receives 250,000 visitors every year. The most famous attraction is the Redwood Trail. The nature park had only just opened again and had to close again due to the fires.