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A person stands on a sun-dappled trail looking up at the redwood trees towering above, by Canopy Dynamics

Introduction to Forest Bathing

Forest bathing, or “Shinrin-yoku” as it’s called in Japan where the practice was founded, is a way of immersing your senses in nature that has proven benefits for our physical and mental well being. Time in nature can boost our immune systems and creativity, settle our minds, and lower our stress levels. But how do you forest bathe? While an actual bath in the forest is not required, here’s an introduction to get started improving your connection with nature and your health.

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Silhouetted forest descends to glittering sea out to mountains against a hazy sky tinted by sunset, by Orenda Randuch

Help Rebuild State Parks

Help California State Parks rebuild Big Basin, Butano, and Año Nuevo State Parks and protect the region’s incredible biodiversity devastated by the 2020 CZU Fire. Stay tuned for the next step to ask state leadership to rebuild State Parks and protect priority lands in the Santa Cruz mountains.

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A branch of oak leaves changing from greenish-yellow to rusty orange hangs above a view a green canyon to the forested slopes of the Santa Cruz mountains beyond from Castle Rock State Park

Fall and Winter Hikes

As thermometers and leaves drop, crisp air and leaves beckon us outside to appreciate a different side of the Santa Cruz mountains’ wild beauty – colorful leaves, sparkling creeks, migrating birds, curious mushrooms, and of course banana slugs and elephant seals. If you’re looking for trails and places to enjoy the change of seasons this fall and winter, you’re in luck! Our staff are revealing their favorite places to go in the Santa Cruz mountains now.

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Accessibility Guide Bob Coomber 4 Wheel Bob By Ian Bornarth

Accessibility in the Santa Cruz Mountains

We are showcasing accessible trails in the Santa Cruz mountains, and we talked with Bob Coomber–the renowned hiker “4 Wheel Bob”, lifelong admirer of redwoods, and member of the State Parks Recreational Trails Commission–to discuss his experiences with accessibility and how he has overcome challenges to explore the outdoors far beyond where the paved trail ends.

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OpenRoad: Quiroste Valley – Restoring Sacred Ground

OpenRoad’s Quiroste Valley story, originally broadcast on NBC Bay Area, explores the beautiful Quiroste Valley (pronounced “Keer-osh-tee”) by the San Mateo coast where Portola’s expedition made “first contact” with the native people in 1769 before going on to “discover” San Francisco Bay. It showcases the wonderful collaborations underway between Sempervirens Fund, the Amah Mutsun Tribal…

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Goal: $124,000 by June 30

Double your impact protecting redwoods! Every dollar counts towards safeguarding these majestic giants. Act now to ensure a thriving future for our redwood forests.

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