New Year's resolutions don't have to be painful or mean giving something up. In fact, they're often about restoration and taking things in. Few activities replenish health more than spending time in nature. Take a look around. We are positively bursting with natural beauty. From the redwoods to the beaches to the mountains and rivers, Humboldt's ready with your remedy.
If it's been a while since you've strolled among the tall trees with your head tilted back, immersed in that beautiful balance of awe and peace, don't wait another weekend. Our spectacular forests become a bit more primeval the first Saturday of every month when the Newton B. Drury Parkway through Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park closes to motorized vehicles on Bike and Hike Day. Take advantage of the next one on Jan. 7 from sunrise to sunset (free). Bring the kids on bikes, skates or strollers. Dogs on leash are welcome, too — just not on trails.
If the beach beckons, head to the dunes to learn about the importance of protected areas with Friends of the Dunes and the Northcoast Environmental Center during Exploring Protected Areas on Land & Sea on Saturday, Jan. 7 from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Ma-le'l Dunes Parking Area (free). In celebration of Underwater Parks Day, naturalist Carol Vander Meer and Marine Protected Area outreach coordinator Delia Bense-Kang will take you on a guided walk to explore the bountiful biodiversity present in our coastal dunes. Breathe in fresh air, absorb some vitamin D and work those calf muscles. R.S.V.P recommended, so call 444-1397.