Redwoods in Southern California
What makes Northern California so magical are the sequoia tree forests. You will find the evergreens spreading their branches almost in every other neighborhood around the Bay Area and along the coast of the Pacific Ocean.
Now there’s just one location in all of Southern California where you can find Sequoia sempervirens! Yes, this is not a joke – it’s an actual mini arboretum with tall coastal sequoias, located on the outskirts of orange county in Carbon Canyon Regional Park (carbon canyon redwoods) in the neighborhood of Brea.
Redwood grove in the middle of the desert.
Here’s a quick aerial overview of the park and specifically the redwood grove at the carbon Canyon park in Brea.
Literally a little Redwood grove in the middle of the desert. A small valley with climate ideal for the northern ever green trees right here in SoCal.
While hanging back at the carbon canyon redwoods we admired the little giants of the north reminiscing about our mini-expeditions up north. Clearly it’s nowhere as impressive as exploring Sequoia National Park or the mariposa grove in Yosemite although we had a pleasant nostalgic sensation, it was as if we almost went back to Mendocino for a moment.
Carbon canyon – best photo shoot location
Many families take their family portraits for Christmas, weddings, baby showers and other life events at the carbon canyon redwood tree park.
The trees provide a perfect drop back and will make any photo shoot a special occasion. We witnessed about half a dozen photographers with families and couples taking those Christmas cards shots.
Furthermore, there’s an insanely awesome kids playground and a central pond to walk around at. You will sees a good lot ducks, geese, swans, pelicans and other marine birds traversing the little bassin – might be a good idea to bring that long zoom lens.
Excerpt from Los Angeles times by Shelby Grad
Look straight up at the dark, stiff trunks as they rise 50 feet before disappearing inside the dense green canopy illuminated like neon by the morning sun.
From this vantage point, it’s easy to assume that this grove of about 180 redwoods is as old as the dusty back roads and rusting oil works they share a home with in Carbon Canyon along the foothills north of Brea.
But these trees are relative newcomers to this area rich in history.
Planted in 1975 when the 124 acres of land around it were made into the Carbon Canyon Regional Park, the redwoods form a jagged skyline as they rise from a narrow valley about two miles from the park entrance.
The coastal redwoods, or Sequoia sempervirens, are out of place amid the brush and wind-swept grass of the dry inland foothills. This becomes apparent in the summer, when park rangers occasionally spray the trees with water as a way of removing the dirt and grime that accumulate from the smog.
Nonetheless, the trees have prospered on the land, rising from five to 15 feet when planted to their current stature of 40 to 70 feet, said park ranger Jeff Bukshpan. And during the hottest days of August, Bukshpan said, there is probably no better place in the park to sit than inside the cool grove.
“The area just draws you in,” he said.
Also attracted to the arbor are assorted animals, including coyotes and rabbits as well as a variety of birds.
The grove’s natural moisture, coupled by park rangers’ habit of keeping the area wet, has also prevented several brush fires from incinerating the grove.
The redwoods are nestled at the back end of the park, which includes picnic tables, playgrounds, tennis courts and a small lake.
The park stands on the site where 100 years ago the oil town of Olinda rose from the canyon floor. A state historical marker near the ranger’s station notes Olinda’s existence as a tiny enclave that died out with the oil boom at the turn of the century.
At first glance, it might appear that little since has changed at the mouth of Carbon Canyon. Oil wells and horse stables dot the hilly landscape and the chaparral remains untouched by construction.
But times are changing.
Development in Chino Hills to the northeast has made for congested rush-hour traffic on the meandering two-lane Carbon Canyon Road, Bukshpan said. There is also the possibility of suburban sprawl creeping up from Brea.
“The usage on the road has increased tremendously,” Bukshpan said as he looked from his office to the road. At times, “it’s car-to-car traffic down the road.”