Lady Bird Johnson Grove, Redwood National Park

Lady Bird Johnson Grove in Redwood National Park is gorgeous. From clover and ferns covering the soil to tall rhododendron bushes at eye level to the coast redwood trees (Sequoia sempervirens) and Douglas firs towering above, this grove seems to harbor countless shades of green and brown. I spent two mornings in Lady Bird Johnson Grove recently, not seeing another person either morning**, and really enjoyed my time among these epic trees. Fortunately for my cameras, on the second morning I was blessed with light fog that produced sufficiently soft light that I was able to obtain the type of evenly exposed images of these giant redwoods I was hoping to make.

Giant redwood, Lady Bird Johnson Grove, Redwood National Park.  The coastal redwood, or simply 'redwood', is the tallest tree on Earth, reaching a height of 379' and living 3500 years or more.  It is native to coastal California and the southwestern corner of Oregon within the United States, but most concentrated in Redwood National and State Parks in Northern California, found close to the coast where moisture and soil conditions can support its unique size and growth requirements, Sequoia sempervirens

Giant redwood, Lady Bird Johnson Grove, Redwood National Park. The coastal redwood, or simply ‘redwood’, is the tallest tree on Earth, reaching a height of 379′ and living 3500 years or more. It is native to coastal California and the southwestern corner of Oregon within the United States, but most concentrated in Redwood National and State Parks in Northern California, found close to the coast where moisture and soil conditions can support its unique size and growth requirements.
Image ID: 25795
Species: Coast redwood, giant redwood, California redwood, Sequoia sempervirens
Location: Redwood National Park, California, USA

The most useful lens in this grove was my Canon 16-35mm f/2.8 II. I find that my copy of this lens is very sharp at f/8-16 at all focal lengths except 16mm, so when I wanted a very wide image I would rack the zoom ring all the way out and then just back off a tiny bit (17mm?). I did shoot a few HDR images since upward looking compositions in a forest can be difficult to expose properly. HDR, or high dynamic range photography, uses a sequence of images in which the exposure is systematically varied and, when later combined on a computer using special software, hopefully results in an image that has greater range than can be obtained in a single exposure. However, I find that natural-looking results are usually difficult to obtain with HDR software, and my attempts with redwood trees were no different, so I have included only five HDR images (created using Photomatix from 3-5 original frames) in the images I have kept for my files. I was, however, pleasantly surprised to find that the noise on my Canon 1Ds Mark III and Canon 5D Mark II cameras, combined with ISO 100 and long exposure times, was low enough that I was able to sufficiently lighten shadow areas to make the images I originally envisioned.

Ferns grow below coastal redwood and Douglas Fir trees, Lady Bird Johnson Grove, Redwood National Park.  The coastal redwood, or simply 'redwood', is the tallest tree on Earth, reaching a height of 379' and living 3500 years or more.  It is native to coastal California and the southwestern corner of Oregon within the United States, but most concentrated in Redwood National and State Parks in Northern California, found close to the coast where moisture and soil conditions can support its unique size and growth requirements, Sequoia sempervirens

Ferns grow below coastal redwood and Douglas Fir trees, Lady Bird Johnson Grove, Redwood National Park. The coastal redwood, or simply ‘redwood’, is the tallest tree on Earth, reaching a height of 379′ and living 3500 years or more. It is native to coastal California and the southwestern corner of Oregon within the United States, but most concentrated in Redwood National and State Parks in Northern California, found close to the coast where moisture and soil conditions can support its unique size and growth requirements.
Image ID: 25796
Species: Coast redwood, giant redwood, California redwood, Sequoia sempervirens
Location: Redwood National Park, California, USA

Commemoration plaque in Lady Bird Johnson Grove, marking the place where President Richard Nixon dedicated this coastal redwood grove to Lady Bird Johnson, an environmental activist and former first lady, Sequoia sempervirens, Redwood National Park, California

Commemoration plaque in Lady Bird Johnson Grove, marking the place where President Richard Nixon dedicated this coastal redwood grove to Lady Bird Johnson, an environmental activist and former first lady.
Image ID: 25808
Species: Coast redwood, giant redwood, California redwood, Sequoia sempervirens
Location: Redwood National Park, California, USA

**Make sure to get there early so that the tranquility of your visit is not brought crashing down to Earth by the laughter of kids playing tag along the path or the shouts of their parents trying to rein them in.