Fern Canyon

Posted: May 13th, 2019



Fern Canyon is a shady canyon with 50-foot high fern walls in Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park. It's draped in seven kinds of ferns (five-finger, deer, lady, sword and chain ferns). The canyon can be reached by driving to a parking lot near the beach with a short hike or by hiking from Prairie Creek Visitor Center about 5-miles (about 11-miles round trip). Fern Canyon can be very popular on the weekends, which can make it difficult to take photos due to slow, unprepared hikers without adequate water-proof footware.

Fern Canyon was used for a scene in the movie: The Lost World: Jurassic Park. It offers a unique hike of about half-a-mile through a creek to near the ocean. There are a few turns in the canyon which provide for a mystical experience. At the canyon you can hear birds and the ocean.

Tips for Hiking to Fern Canyon

  • Bring stream shoes (waterproof sandals, shoes or boots with some toe protection for rocks so you can walk through the canyon easily)
  • Hike from Prairie Creek Visitor Center, round trip (about 11-miles) on the James Irvine Trail, to see a large variety of plant life change as you approach the beach
  • Bring ample food and water for the hike
  • Bug spray may be helpful in some parts of the hike where there is standing water

Tagged: California, Ferns

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