Feather Falls is an experience

Good planning and a little luck brought our group of nine to Feather Falls on a perfect spring day. As we left Sac State under cloudy skies, we hoped the weather would cooperate, but we also tucked some extra layers in our daypacks, just to be prepared.
We chose the longer, but more gentle, trail (4.5 mi.) for our walk in to the Falls, giving us a chance to settle into a comfortable stride and enjoy the sights. The abundance of the forest ecology was evident all around. Recent rains had prepared the forest for our visit, but nicely held off as we enjoyed our hike. Slow-moving salamanders crawled in the rich humus on the forest floor. Where the sunlight reached open meadows, blooming wild flowers glimmered orange, blue, white and yellow, announcing the arrival of the season.
The robust seasonal runoff provided an exciting show as we arrived at the Falls. We were all ready for lunch as we found places to share the stunning view and enjoy a break on the viewing platform. Some of us lingered a little longer over lunch and the view, while several others went for the short hike around to the top of the falls for different perspective. The spray from the falls seemed to gather and mix with a light mist from the skies, providing another layer to the natural wonder of our visit.
For the return route, we took the shorter, but steeper route (3.5 mi.) along the lower creek. We all gathered at a rock clearing along the trail as we neared the end our hike. As experienced trekers and new hikers alike, we rested, shared the miracle of spring, and the fun of just being in the woods. We took pictures, shared power bars, and reflected on the day. This rest spot also has acorn-grinding divots in the rocks, carved over the millennia by Native Americans, illuminating our place in the long history of those who have enjoyed this special place.


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