National Park Service
It was created on August 25,1916, by Congress through the National Park Service Organic Act and is an agency of the United States Department of the Interior. As of 2014, the NPS employs 21,651 employees who oversee 417 units, the National Park Service celebrated its centennial in 2016. National parks and national monuments in the United States were originally individually managed under the auspices of the Department of the Interior, the movement for an independent agency to oversee these federal lands was spearheaded by business magnate and conservationist Stephen Mather, as well as J. Horace McFarland. With the help of journalist Robert Sterling Yard, Mather ran a publicity campaign for the Department of the Interior and they wrote numerous articles that praised the scenic and historic qualities of the parks and their possibilities for educational and recreational benefits. This campaign resulted in the creation of a National Park Service, Mather became the first director of the newly formed NPS.
On March 3,1933, President Herbert Hoover signed the Reorganization Act of 1933, the act would allow the President to reorganize the executive branch of the United States government. It wasnt until that summer when the new President, Franklin D. Roosevelt, President Roosevelt agreed and issued two Executive orders to make it happen. In 1951, Conrad Wirth became director of the National Park Service, the demand for parks after the end of the World War II had left the parks overburdened with demands that could not be met. In 1952, with the support of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, he began Mission 66, New parks were added to preserve unique resources and existing park facilities were upgraded and expanded. In 1966, as the Park Service turned 50 years old, emphasis began to turn from just saving great and wonderful scenery, Director George Hartzog began the process with the creation of the National Lakeshores and National Recreation Areas. Since its inception in 1916, the National Park Service has managed each of the United States national parks, Yellowstone National Park was the first national park in the United States.
In 1872, there was no government to manage it. Yosemite National Park began as a park, the land for the park was donated by the federal government to the state of California in 1864 for perpetual conservation. Yosemite was returned to federal ownership, at first, each national park was managed independently, with varying degrees of success. In Yellowstone, the staff was replaced by the U. S. Army in 1886. Due to the irregularities in managing these national treasures, Stephen Mather petitioned the government to improve the situation. In response, Secretary of the Interior Franklin K. Lane challenged him to lobby for creating a new agency, Mather was successful with the ratification of the National Park Service Organic Act in 1916. Later, the agency was given authority over other protected areas, the National Park System includes all properties managed by the National Park Service
Joshua Tree National Park
Joshua Tree National Park is located in southeastern California. Declared a U. S. National Park in 1994 when the U. S. Congress passed the California Desert Protection Act and it is named for the Joshua trees native to the park. It covers a area of 790,636 acres —an area slightly larger than the state of Rhode Island. A large part of the park, some 429,690 acres, is a wilderness area. The Little San Bernardino Mountains run through the southwest edge of the park, in 1950, the size of the park was reduced by about 265,000 acres to exclude some mining property. The park was elevated to a National Park on 31 October 1994 by the Desert Protection Act, the higher and cooler Mojave Desert is the special habitat of Yucca brevifolia, the Joshua tree for which the park is named. It occurs in patterns from dense forests to distantly spaced specimens, in addition to Joshua tree forests, the western part of the park includes some of the most interesting geologic displays found in Californias deserts. The dominant geologic features of landscape are hills of bare rock.
These hills are popular amongst rock climbing and scrambling enthusiasts, the flatland between these hills is sparsely forested with Joshua trees. Together with the piles and Skull Rock, the trees make the landscape otherworldly. Temperatures are most comfortable in the spring and fall, with an average high/low of 85 and 50 °F respectively, winter brings cooler days, around 60 °F, and freezing nights. It occasionally snows at higher elevations, summers are hot, over 100 °F during the day and not cooling much below 75 °F until the early hours of the morning. Joshua trees dominate the open spaces of the park, but in among the outcroppings are piñon pine, California juniper, Quercus turbinella, Quercus john-tuckeri. These communities are under stress, however, as the climate was wetter until the 1930s, with the same hot. These cycles were nothing new, but the vegetation did not prosper when wetter cycles returned. The difference may have been human development, cattle grazing took out some of the natural cover and made it less resistant to the changes.
But the bigger problem seems to be invasive species, such as cheatgrass, in drier times, they die back, but do not quickly decompose. This makes wildfires hotter and more destructive, which some of the trees that would have otherwise survived
California State Route 1
State Route 1 is a major north-south state highway that runs along most of the Pacific coastline of the U. S. state of California. At a total of just over 655.8 miles, it is the longest state route in California, Highway 1 has several portions designated as either Pacific Coast Highway, Cabrillo Highway, Shoreline Highway, or Coast Highway. Its southern terminus is at Interstate 5 near Dana Point in Orange County, Highway 1 at times runs concurrently with US101, most notably through a 54-mile stretch in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, and across the Golden Gate Bridge. The highway is designated as an All-American Road, SR1 was built piecemeal in various stages, with the first section opening in the Big Sur region in the 1930s. However, portions of the route had several names and numbers over the years as more segments opened and it was not until the 1964 state highway renumbering that the entire route was officially designated as Highway 1. Highway 1 is part of the California Freeway and Expressway System and is eligible for the State Scenic Highway System, only a few stretches between Los Angeles and San Francisco have officially been designated as a scenic highway.
The Big Sur section from San Luis Obispo to Carmel is an official National Scenic Byway, the entire route is designated as a Blue Star Memorial Highway to recognize those in the United States armed forces. In Southern California, the California Legislature has designated the segment between Interstate 5 in Dana Point and US101 near Oxnard as the Pacific Coast Highway, the legislature has designated the route as the Shoreline Highway between the Manzanita Junction near Marin City and Leggett. Smaller segments of the highway have been assigned other names by the state. The legislature has relinquished state control of segments within Dana Point, Newport Beach, Santa Monica, and Oxnard. The route annually helps bring several billion dollars to the tourism industry. Segments of Highway 1 range from a rural road to an urban freeway. Because of the former, long distance thru traffic traveling between the metropolitan areas are instead advised to use faster routes such as US101 or I-5. At its southernmost end in Orange County, Highway 1 terminates at I-5 in Capistrano Beach in Dana Point and it travels west into the city center.
After leaving Dana Point, Highway 1 continues northwest along the coast through Laguna Beach, Highway 1 enters Newport Beach, where it is known as simply Coast Highway. Upon entering Huntington Beach, Highway 1 regains the Pacific Coast Highway designation and it passes Huntington State Beach and the southern terminus of California State Route 39 before reaching Bolsa Chica State Beach and the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve. PCH continues along the coast into Seal Beach, the city on its journey in Orange County. PCH enters Los Angeles County and the city of Long Beach after crossing the San Gabriel River, Highway 1 continues northwest through the city to its junction with Lakewood Boulevard and Los Coyotes Diagonal at the Los Alamitos Circle, more than 2 miles from the coast
State parks are parks or other protected areas managed at the sub-national level within those nations which use state as a political subdivision. State parks are established by a state to preserve a location on account of its natural beauty, historic interest. There are state parks under the administration of the government of each U. S. state, some of the Mexican states, the term is used in the Australian state of Victoria. The equivalent term used in Canada, South Africa, similar systems of local government maintained parks exist in other countries, but the terminology varies. State parks are thus similar to parks, but under state rather than federal administration. Similarly, local government entities below state level may maintain parks, in general, state parks are smaller than national parks, with a few exceptions such as the Adirondack Park in New York and Anza-Borrego Desert State Park in California. As of 2014, there were 10,234 state park units in the United States, there are some 739 million annual visits to the countrys state parks.
The NASPD further counts over 43,000 miles of trail,217,367 campsites, many states include designations beyond state park in their state parks systems. Other designations might be state recreation areas, state beaches, some state park systems include long-distance trails and historic sites. The title of oldest state park in the United States is claimed by Niagara Falls State Park in New York, however several public parks previously or currently maintained at the state level pre-date it. Indian Springs State Park has been operated continuously by the state of Georgia as a park since 1825. In 1864 Yosemite Valley and Mariposa Grove were ceded by the government to California until Yosemite National Park was proclaimed in 1890. In 1878 Wisconsin set aside a vast swath of its forests as The State Park but, needing money. The first state park with the designation of state park was Mackinac Island State Park in 1895, list of U. S. state parks National Association of State Park Directors Wilderness preservation systems in the United States Ahlgren, Carol.
The Civilian Conservation Corps and Wisconsin State Park Development, the State Park Movement in America, A Critical Review excerpt and text search Larson, Zeb. Silver Falls State Park and the Early Environmental Movement, oregon Historical Quarterly 112#1 pp, 34-57 in JSTOR Newton, Norman T. When Forests Trumped Parks, The Maryland Experience, 1906-1950, Maryland Historical Magazine 101#2 pp, 203-224
Sequoia National Park
Sequoia National Park is a national park in the southern Sierra Nevada east of Visalia, California, in the United States. It was established on September 25,1890, the park is south of and contiguous with Kings Canyon National Park, the two are administered by the National Park Service together as the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. They were designated the UNESCO Sequoia-Kings Canyon Biosphere Reserve in 1976, the park is famous for its giant sequoia trees, including the General Sherman tree, the largest tree on Earth. The General Sherman tree grows in the Giant Forest, which five out of the ten largest trees in the world. The Giant Forest is connected by the Generals Highway to Kings Canyon National Parks General Grant Grove, the parks giant sequoia forests are part of 202,430 acres of old-growth forests shared by Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Indeed, the preserve a landscape that still resembles the southern Sierra Nevada before Euro-American settlement. Many park visitors enter Sequoia National Park through its entrance near the town of Three Rivers at Ash Mountain at 1,700 ft elevation.
The last California grizzly was killed in this park in 1922, the California Black Oak is a key transition species between the chaparral and higher elevation conifer forest. At higher elevations in the front country, between 5,500 and 9,000 feet in elevation, the landscape becomes montane forest-dominated coniferous belt, found here are Ponderosa, Jeffrey and lodgepole pine trees, as well as abundant white and red fir. Found here too are the giant sequoia trees, the most massive living single-stem trees on earth, between the trees and summer snowmelts sometimes fan out to form lush, though delicate, meadows. In this region, visitors often see deer, Douglas squirrels, and American black bears. There are plans to reintroduce the bighorn sheep to this park, the vast majority of the park is roadless wilderness, no road crosses the Sierra Nevada within the parks boundaries. 84 percent of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks is designated wilderness and is only by foot or by horseback. Sequoias backcountry offers a vast expanse of high-alpine wonders, covering the highest-elevation region of the High Sierra, the backcountry includes Mount Whitney on the eastern border of the park, accessible from the Giant Forest via the High Sierra Trail.
On the floor of canyon, at least two days hike from the nearest road, is the Kern Canyon hot spring, a popular resting point for weary backpackers. From the floor of Kern Canyon, the trail ascends again over 8,000 ft to the summit of Mount Whitney, in the summertime, Native Americans would travel over the high mountain passes to trade with tribes to the East. By the time the first European settlers arrived in the area, smallpox had spread to the region. The first European settler to homestead in the area was Hale Tharp, Tharp allowed his cattle to graze the meadow, but at the same time had a respect for the grandeur of the forest and led early battles against logging in the area
Muir Woods National Monument
Muir Woods National Monument is a unit of the National Park Service on Mount Tamalpais near the Pacific coast, in southwestern Marin County, California. It is part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, and is 12 miles north of San Francisco and it protects 554 acres, of which 240 acres are old growth coast redwood forests, one of a few such stands remaining in the San Francisco Bay Area. The Muir Woods National Monument is an old-growth coastal redwood forest, due to its proximity to the Pacific Ocean, the forest is regularly shrouded in a coastal marine layer fog, contributing to a wet environment that encourages vigorous plant growth. The fog is vital for the growth of the redwoods as they use moisture from the fog during droughty seasons, the monument is cool and moist year round with average daytime temperatures between 40 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Rainfall is heavy during the winter and summers are almost completely dry with the exception of fog drip caused by the fog passing through the trees.
Annual precipitation in the ranges from 39.4 inches in the lower valley to 47.2 inches higher up in the mountain slopes. The redwoods grow on brown humus-rich loam which may be gravelly and this soil has been assigned to the Centissima series, which is always found on sloping ground. It is well drained, moderately deep, and slightly to moderately acidic and it has developed from a mélange in the Franciscan Formation. More open areas of the park have shallow gravelly loam of the Barnabe series, one hundred and fifty million years ago ancestors of redwood and sequoia trees grew throughout the United States. Today, the Sequoia sempervirens can be only in a narrow, cool coastal belt from Monterey, California. Before the logging industry came to California, there were an estimated 2 million acres of old growth forest containing redwoods growing in a strip along the coast. By the early 20th century, most of these forests had been cut down, just north of the San Francisco Bay, one valley named Redwood Canyon remained uncut, mainly due to its relative inaccessibility.
He and his wife, Elizabeth Thacher Kent, purchased 611 acres of land from the Tamalpais Land and Water Company for $45,000 with the goal of protecting the redwoods and the mountain above them. In 1907, a company in nearby Sausalito planned to dam Redwood Creek. When Kent objected to the plan, the company threatened to use eminent domain. Kent sidestepped the water companys plot by donating 295 acres of the redwood forest to the federal government, on January 9,1908, President Theodore Roosevelt declared the land a National Monument, the first to be created from land donated by a private individual. President Roosevelt agreed, writing back, MY DEAR MR, responding to some photographs of Muir Woods that Mr. Kent had sent him, Those are awfully good photos. Kent and Muir had become friends over shared views of wilderness preservation, in December 1928, the Kent Memorial was erected at the Kent Tree in Fern Canyon
In fluid dynamics, wind waves, or wind-generated waves, are surface waves that occur on the free surface of bodies of water. They result from the wind blowing over an area of fluid surface, Waves in the oceans can travel thousands of miles before reaching land. Wind waves on Earth range in size from small ripples, to waves over 100 ft high, when directly generated and affected by local winds, a wind wave system is called a wind sea. After the wind ceases to blow, wind waves are called swells, more generally, a swell consists of wind-generated waves that are not significantly affected by the local wind at that time. They have been generated elsewhere or some time ago, wind waves in the ocean are called ocean surface waves. Wind waves have an amount of randomness, subsequent waves differ in height, duration. The key statistics of wind waves in evolving sea states can be predicted with wind wave models, although waves are usually considered in the water seas of Earth, the hydrocarbon seas of Titan may have wind-driven waves.
The great majority of large breakers seen at a result from distant winds. Water depth All of these work together to determine the size of wind waves. Further exposure to that wind could only cause a dissipation of energy due to the breaking of wave tops. Waves in an area typically have a range of heights. For weather reporting and for analysis of wind wave statistics. This figure represents an average height of the highest one-third of the waves in a time period. The significant wave height is the value a trained observer would estimate from visual observation of a sea state, given the variability of wave height, the largest individual waves are likely to be somewhat less than twice the reported significant wave height for a particular day or storm. Wave formation on a flat water surface by wind is started by a random distribution of normal pressure of turbulent wind flow over the water. This pressure fluctuation produces normal and tangential stresses in the surface water and it is assumed that, The water is originally at rest.
There is a distribution of normal pressure to the water surface from the turbulent wind. Correlations between air and water motions are neglected, the second mechanism involves wind shear forces on the water surface
Monterey County, California
Monterey County is a county located on the Pacific coast of the U. S. state of California. As of the 2010 census, the population was 415,057, the county seat and largest city is Salinas. Monterey County comprises the Salinas, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area, the northern half of the bay is in Santa Cruz County. Monterey County is a member of the governmental agency, Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments. The coastline, including Big Sur, State Route 1, the city of Monterey was the capital of California under Spanish and Mexican rule. The economy is based upon tourism in the coastal regions. Most of the people live near the northern coast and Salinas Valley, while the southern coast. Monterey County was one of the counties of California, created in 1850 at the time of statehood. Parts of the county were given to San Benito County in 1874, the area was originally populated by Ohlone, Salinan & Esselen tribes. The county derived its name from Monterey Bay, the bay was named by Sebastián Vizcaíno in 1602 in honor of the Conde de Monterrey, the Viceroy of New Spain.
Monterrey is a variation of Monterrei, a municipality in the Galicia region of Spain where the Conde de Monterrey and his father were from. According to the U. S. Census Bureau, the county has an area of 3,771 square miles. The county is roughly 1.5 times larger than the state of Delaware and these areas had a median household income significantly above that of the California or the U. S. overall and comprised roughly 8%-10% of neighorhoods. Social deprivation was concentrated in the central and eastern parts of Salinas, in central and eastern Salinas up to 46% of individuals lived below the poverty line and those without a secondary educations formed a plurality or majority of residents. Overall, the Salinas metropolitan area, defined as coterminous with Monterey County, was among the least educated areas in the nation. Roughly 8% of neighborhoods, as defined by Census Block Groups, had a household income above $100,000 per year. This coincided with the top 20 census block groups in the county listed below, most affluent neighborhoods * Asterisk denotes a hypothetical rank among Monterey Countys 226 Census Block Groups.
About 4. 5% of neighborhoods, as defined by Census Block Groups, had a household income below $30,000 per year
Golden Gate National Recreation Area
The Golden Gate National Recreation Area is a U. S. National Recreation Area protecting 80,002 acres of ecologically and historically significant landscapes surrounding the San Francisco Bay Area. Much of the park is land used by the United States Army. GGNRA is managed by the National Park Service and is one of the most visited units of the National Park system in the United States, with more than 15 million visitors a year. It is one of the largest urban parks in the world, the park is not one continuous locale, but rather a collection of areas that stretch from southern San Mateo County to northern Marin County, and includes several areas of San Francisco. The park is as diverse as it is expansive, it contains famous tourist attractions such as Muir Woods National Monument, the park was created thanks to the cooperative legislative efforts of cosponsors Congressman William S. Mailliard and Congressman Phillip Burton. In 1972, President Richard Nixon signed into law An Act to Establish the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, the bill allocated $120 million for land acquisition and development.
The National Park Service first purchased Alcatraz and Fort Mason from the U. S. Army, the Nature Conservancy transferred the land to the GGNRA. These properties formed the basis for the park. Throughout the next 30 years, the National Park service acquired land and historic sites from the U. S. Army, private landowners and corporations, incorporating them into the GGNRA. Many decommissioned Army bases and fortifications were incorporated into the park, including Fort Funston, four Nike missile sites, The Presidio, the latest acquisition by the National Park Service is Mori Point, a small parcel of land on the Pacifica coast. In 1988, UNESCO designated the GGNRA and 12 adjacent protected areas the Golden Gate Biosphere Reserve, the property, located south of Pacifica and surrounding the communities of Moss Beach and Montara, is home to many diverse plant and animal species. The bill passed in the Senate, but did not pass the House of Representatives, Fort Baker - former Army post located on the northern side of the Golden Gate Headlands Center for the Arts - an artist residency program set in renovated military buildings in the Marin Headlands.
Nike Missile Site SF-88 - a decommissioned Army surface-to-air missile site located near Fort Barry, located at the southwestern corner of the Presidio Battery Chamberlin - one of the last remaining coastal defense disappearing guns on the U. S. Trails lead across the ridge and to Sharp Park beach, the site includes recently restored wetlands and a pond, protecting endangered San Francisco garter snake and red-legged frog habitat. Rancho Corral de Tierra - the GGNRAs newest park, Golden Gate National Recreation Area Scenery Video, a video showing the scenery observed from the GGNRA, including footage from Lands End
International Union for Conservation of Nature
The International Union for Conservation of Nature is an international organization working in the field of nature conservation and sustainable use of natural resources. It is involved in gathering and analysis, field projects, lobbying. IUCNs mission is to influence and assist societies throughout the world to conserve nature and to ensure that any use of resources is equitable. Over the past decades, IUCN has widened its focus beyond conservation ecology and now incorporates issues related to equality, poverty alleviation. Unlike other international NGOs, IUCN does not itself aim to mobilize the public in support of nature conservation and it tries to influence the actions of governments and other stakeholders by providing information and advice, and through lobbying and partnerships. The organization is best known to the public for compiling and publishing the IUCN Red List. IUCN has a membership of over 1200 governmental and non-governmental organizations, some 11,000 scientists and experts participate in the work of IUCN commissions on a voluntary basis.
It employs approximately 1000 full-time staff in more than 60 countries and its headquarters are in Gland, Switzerland. IUCN has observer and consultative status at the United Nations, and plays a role in the implementation of several conventions on nature conservation. It was involved in establishing the World Wide Fund for Nature, in the past, IUCN has been criticized for placing the interests of nature over those of indigenous peoples. In recent years, its relations with the business sector have caused controversy. It was previously called the International Union for Protection of Nature, establishment In 1947, the Swiss League for the Protection of Nature organised an international conference on the protection of nature in Brunnen. It is considered to be the first government-organized non-governmental organization, the initiative to set up the new organisation came from UNESCO and especially from its first Director General, the British biologist Julian Huxley. At the time of its founding IUPN was the international organisation focusing on the entire spectrum of nature conservation Early years.
Its secretariat was located in Brussels and its first work program focused on saving species and habitats and applying knowledge, advancing education, promoting international agreements and promoting conservation. Providing a solid base for conservation action was the heart of all activities. IUPN and UNESCO were closely associated and they jointly organized the 1949 Conference on Protection of Nature. In preparation for this conference a list of endangered species was drawn up for the first time
The harbor seal, known as the common seal, is a true seal found along temperate and Arctic marine coastlines of the Northern Hemisphere. The most widely distributed species of pinniped, they are found in waters of the northern Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Harbor seals are brown, silvery white, tan, or gray, an adult can attain a length of 1.85 meters and a mass of 132 kilograms. Blubber under the skin helps to maintain body temperature. Harbor seals stick to familiar resting spots or haulout sites, generally rocky areas where they are protected from weather conditions and predation. Males may fight over mates underwater and on land, females bear a single pup after a nine-month gestation, which they care for alone. Pups can weigh up to 16 kg and are able to swim and they develop quickly on their mothers fat-rich milk and are weaned after four to six weeks. The global population of seals is 350, 000–500,000. Once a common practice, sealing is now illegal in many nations within the animals range, individual harbor seals possess a unique pattern of spots, either dark on a light background or light on a dark.
They vary in color from black to tan or grey. The body and flippers are short, heads are rounded, as with other true seals, there is no pinna. An ear canal may be visible behind the eye, including the head and flippers, they may reach an adult length of 1.85 meters and a weight of 55 to 168 kg. Females are generally smaller than males, there are an estimated 350, 000–500,000 harbor seals worldwide. While the population is not threatened as a whole, the Greenland, Hokkaidō, local populations have been reduced or eliminated through disease and conflict with humans, both unintentionally and intentionally. It is legal to kill seals perceived to threaten fisheries in the United Kingdom and Canada, Seals are taken in subsistence hunting and accidentally as bycatch. Along the Norwegian coast bycatch accounted for 48% of pup mortality, Seals in the United Kingdom are protected by the 1970 Conservation of Seals Act, which prohibits most forms of killing. There are five subspecies of Phoca vitulina, Western Atlantic common seals, P. v. concolor, the validity of this subspecies is questionable, and not supported by genetic evidence.
Ungava seals, P. v. mellonae, are found in eastern Canada in fresh water, Pacific common seals, P. v. richardsi, are located in western North America
Sequoia sempervirens /sᵻˈkɔɪ. ə sɛmpərˈvaɪrənz/ is the sole living species of the genus Sequoia in the cypress family Cupressaceae. Common names include coast redwood, coastal redwood and California redwood and it is an evergreen, long-lived, monoecious tree living 1, 200–1,800 years or more. This species includes the tallest living trees on Earth, reaching up to 379 feet in height and these trees are among the oldest living things on Earth. The name sequoia sometimes refers to the subfamily Sequoioideae, which includes S. sempervirens along with Sequoiadendron, the term redwood on its own refers to the species covered in this article, and not to the other two species. Scottish botanist David Don described the redwood as the evergreen taxodium in his colleague Aylmer Bourke Lamberts 1824 work A description of the genus Pinus, austrian botanist Stephan Endlicher erected the genus Sequoia in his 1847 work Synopsis coniferarum, giving the redwood its current binomial name of Sequoia sempervirens.
The redwood is one of three living species, each in its own genus, in the subfamily Sequoioideae, molecular studies have shown the three to be each others closest relatives, generally with the redwood and giant sequoia as each others closest relatives. However and colleagues in 2010 queried the polyploid state of the redwood, further analysis strongly supported the hypothesis that Sequoia was the result of a hybridization event involving Metasequoia and Sequoiadendron. Thus and colleagues hypothesize that the inconsistent relationships among Metasequoia, the coast redwood can reach 115 m tall with a trunk diameter of 9 m. It has a crown, with horizontal to slightly drooping branches. The bark can be thick, up to 1-foot, and quite soft and fibrous, with a bright red-brown color when freshly exposed. The root system is composed of shallow, wide-spreading lateral roots, the leaves are variable, being 15–25 mm long and flat on young trees and shaded shoots in the lower crown of old trees. On the other hand, they are scale-like, 5–10 mm long on shoots in full sun in the crown of older trees.
They are dark green above and have two blue-white stomatal bands below, leaf arrangement is spiral, but the larger shade leaves are twisted at the base to lie in a flat plane for maximum light capture. The species is monoecious, with pollen and seed cones on the same plant, the seed cones are ovoid, 15–32 millimetres long, with 15–25 spirally arranged scales, pollination is in late winter with maturation about 8–9 months after. Each cone scale bears three to seven seeds, each seed 3–4 millimetres long and 0.5 millimetres broad, the seeds are released when the cone scales dry out and open at maturity. The pollen cones are ovular and 4–6 millimetres long and its genetic makeup is unusual among conifers, being a hexaploid and possibly allopolyploid. Both the mitochondrial and chloroplast genomes of the redwood are paternally inherited, the prevailing elevation range is 98–2,460 ft above sea level, occasionally down to 0 and up to 3,000 ft. They usually grow in the mountains where precipitation from the incoming moisture off the ocean is greater, the tallest and oldest trees are found in deep valleys and gullies, where year-round streams can flow, and fog drip is regular