The Stout Grove Trail is my favorite hike in Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park! This easy hike puts you in the heart of massive ancient coast Redwood Forest and is a must do for anyone searching to explore Redwood National and State Parks. This trail is easily found off the Howland Hill Scenic Drive on the north portion of the Redwood National and State Park management area.
Stout Grove – Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park
Length: .5 mile Loop Trail
Elevation Gain/Loss: Approx. 75 Feet
Time: Half Hour
Restrooms: 2 vault toilets at the trailhead
Accessibility: The Stout Grove Trail is not an ADA accessible Trail, it is composed of wood and aggregate material and it ranges from 4-6 feet wide.
Pets: Service pets are welcome.
Stout Grove Parking Area : The trailhead is easily located on the North Side of the Howland Hill Road Scenic Drive. This ten mile, one hour scenic drive is easily accessible off Highway 199 just East of the Jedediah Smith Campground also a must see when visiting the Redwoods.
Howland Hill Road is windy, narrow dirt road, and is not suitable for large vehicles. There is no parking for RVs and trailers at the trailhead.
The Stout Grove Trail can also be accessed by a foot bridge from the Jedediah Smith Campground that crosses the Smith River to the Stout Grove Loop.
The Stout Grove
The Stout Grove is located within Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park. This grove is filled with old growth coastal Redwood Trees and is a highlight of any visit to Redwoods National Park.
Like all Redwood Forests, they grow naturally in a narrow strip of the Pacific Coastline between Central California and Southern Oregon. This narrow strip of land is below 2000' in elevation and lies in the fog belt region as these trees need moisture not only from the roots but from the moisture from the fog to survive! Remember that these are the tallest trees on the planet and reach over 350 feet tall with a base of the tree reaching diameters of twenty feet!
Stout Grove Trail Hike
The Stout Memorial Grove Loop is accessible from either the trailhead off Howland Hill Road or the Jedediah Smith Campground. This is an easy hike that is perfect for the entire family.
The hike is filled with huge coastal redwoods. You have the opportunity to experience epic redwoods that are still standing but also some that have fallen giving you the opportunity to view the gigantic root balls and base of these trees.
The trail has a couple of benches along the way to enjoy the scenery and soak in the Redwoods. Plan time to just take a deep breath of the clean forest air and savor the forest sounds. I personally wish that I would have spent more time here just taking in the moment.
Make sure to take a good look at the Stout Tree. This is the largest tree in the Stout Grove and the 7th largest single-stem tree in Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park.
I was completely in awe of its sheer size. Being able to stand near this giant tree makes you feel miniscule in size which doesn’t happen much when I am over six 6 feet tall!
Stout Grove Trail Travel Tips
The trail is covered in forest debris so you will want closed toe shoes or be prepared for forest debris to get in your toes. (This is for my dear wife that loves her Birkenstocks!)
Make sure to bring water with you. There is no water along the trail.
You may want to dress in layers. There is not much sunlight that makes its way to the forest floor through the redwoods so it can be quite cool within the grove and along the river.
Things to do near the Stout Grove Trail
Boy Scout Tree Hike: This 5.5 mile, four hour moderate hike is also located off the Howland Hill Scenic Drive. This hike will take you old growth redwoods, Fern Falls, and Boy Scout Tree.
Get your Junior Ranger Program at the Redwood National Park Headquarters and information Center in Crescent City. Make sure to also take a look at the Battery Point Lighthouse while in Crescent City.
The South end of the Park has the Bald Hills Scenic Drive. This drive also connects you to the Ladybird Johnson Grove and the Tall Trees Grove.
Make sure to check out my article on things to do at Redwood National Park.
Camping and Lodging in Redwood National Park
There are no national park lodges within Redwood National Park. . The closest lodging can be found is cabin rentals at the Jedediah Smith Redwoods and Elk Prairie Campgrounds.
Campgrounds in the Redwoods include:
Mill Creek Campground
National and State Parks with Big Trees
Are you interested in taking a Big Trees Roadtrip? Would you like to see the biggest trees on earth?
Here are several parks you can visit in California and visit parks with Coastal Redwoods and Sequoia Trees.
Humboldt Redwoods State Park
Sequoia National Park: Make sure to check out the Biggest Tree in the world by volume, the General Sherman Tree
Kings Canyon National Park: Check out the Grant Grove and the World's second-largest tree by volume the General Grant Tree.
Don't miss all of the epic National Parks in California