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Activity: Day Hike

1+ miles, 120’ elevation gain, 45 minute duration, rated Easy-Moderate

Date: 10-12-21

This short, but oh so captivating hike will put you right in the middle of a movie set. You will find yourself nervously peering around for piles of baby dinosaurs to come pouring over the logs. Yes, this is the exact spot that Steve Spielberg chose for Jurassic Park 2 ’Lost World’. In one of the scenes a character couldn’t escape the horde of these little terrors and they turned the stream you are walking in red.

The truth of the matter is you have nothing to fear as far as a T-Rex chasing you through the canyon, but do beware that there could be Elk. I have heard hikers turned around by Elk. I viewed a massive Elk that left me spellbound near the large redwoods within the park just before heading to Fern Canyon. At the trailhead there was a sign warning of a recent Mountain Lion sighting. So as night was closing in on me, along with the fact that I found some strange scat, (besides Cougar there is Black Bear as well as Bob Cat in Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park), I did not dally, but at the same time took in my surroundings with the wonder of a child.

The whole place was rather surreal it truly was as if you had been deposited back to prehistoric time. I took the loop clockwise. Trekking poles and waterproof hiking boots would have been helpful as the trail is muddy and slippery in spots. Once you meander along a glorious trail you will finally be dropped down onto the Canyon Floor for the main event. This is where depending on any recent rains you are likely to get your feet wet. I tried as hard as I could to keep my hiking boots dry, tip toeing across branches, maneuvering the stream and climbing over and under logs. I almost kept my feet dry…

Filled with awe and delight I traipsed through the narrow canyon. The earth smelled of mud, moss and broken branches. I spied varied and spectacular verdant vegetation growing out of the vertical 50 to 80 foot walls which appeared even higher due to the dense primeval foliage. Some of the ferns species go back many millions of years. Western Sword, Licorice, and Deer Fern, along with California Polypody and Maidenhair adorned the canyon walls. Simply amazing…

As far as the logistics of this endeavor. Getting to the trailhead is an adventure in itself. The road in is about 10 miles. It is an enchanting drive weaving through the woods much of which is well maintained dirt road. The last four miles is fraught with water filled potholes and even a spot or two that has some moving water across the roadway. Although most vehicles could probably make this trip some have turned back upon viewing the conditions. Please note that the park fee is $8 and cash might be handy incase the credit card device is not available.

‘Pursuing Balance Through Adventure’ YouTube Channel. CLICK THE PIC
Giant Redwoods at Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park
Elk at Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park
Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park’s Gold Bluff Beach
In the Enchanted Forest

I go to nature
to be soothed and healed
and to have my senses
put in order.

The forest and I
were all there was.
In the deep still silence
I could feel
the earth’s beating heart.

I took off my shoes
and walked into the woods
I felt lost and found
with every step I took.

In every walk with nature
I receive far more
than I seek.
-Dr. Ram Mehta

Fern Canyon is a place that captivates the imagination leaving one spellbound by the serenity of God’s creation. The forest’s silence was powerful, enchanting, mesmerizing and liberating. It was everything one seeks when ’Pursing Balance Through Adventure’. To continue with me on this exploration of nature and in turn ourselves please FOLLOW, COMMENT, LIKE and SHARE. The menu above inspires travel to other marvelous places through out the West. Each location is a separate website and thus needs to be FOLLOWED independently. Need Adventure Wear: SHOP APPAREL has literally got you covered and boasts the PBTA Logo and Mantra.

Happy Trails-

Roger Jenkins

Pursuing Balance Through Adventure


Partington Cove Trail


Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park

1 mile, 350’ elevation change, 1 hour duration, rate Moderate

Activity: Day Hike, Scenic Views

This short steep hike leads down an incline to tremendous ocean views that are up close and personal. This adventure was all part of my Big Sur – Oregon Coast Road Trip. After checking out the PIEDRAS BLANCAS NORTHERN ELEPHANT SEAL ROOKERY upon my arrival to the area, I drove through heavy fog to a spot near iconic McWAY FALLS, my first excursion for the next day. After being mesmerized by that magical setting I had a fantastic 8 mile hike at TAN BARK TIN HOUSE TRAIL .

Partington Cove Trail is short and sweet, but as I mentioned steep. There are three fingers to the trek and each needs to be explored. The first follows a babbling brook to a simply gorgeous coastal scene where rock and ocean meet in a spectacular fashion. The next finger works through a forested area, across a little wooden bridge and then to a tunnel which was a surprise for me to see. Into the tunnel of darkness. When I emerged on the other side you would think it was that ‘Voyage to the Center of the Earth’ or other such movies where you emerge into a world of amazement. Another unexpected gem, like discovering hidden treasure… I popped out to the most exquisite cove that just caught me off balance, awash with a wave of awe and delight which flooded my senses. The scent of salt, the sound of the crashing waves, the different shades of blue of the Pacific, the surge of the water to and fro. I could see more of the shoreline from this vantage point then the other more restricted first view. The last finger of the trail followed an enchanting stream into the woods a bit.

This hike is certainly worth the stop. It might be short, but oh so sweet and you will definitely get some exercise making your way back up the steep grade.

Teaser: To see the hidden gem on the other side of the tunnel of darkness click on the following picture which will bring you to the PBTA YouTube Channel and video of the magic of Big Sur.
Pursuing Balance Through Adventure YouTube Channel
“The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in it’s net of wonder forever.”
– Jacques Cousteau

A day by the sea, especially Big Sur, is full of enchantment. We go to such places to unwind, rebuild, reflect, take a load of, or have a break. We go to such places when ’Pursuing Balance Through Adventure’. No matter what kind of day you had the ocean waves can wash the bad away, and the color of the sea erase your blues. What a place to put a little balance back into our sometimes hectic existence. FOLLOW, COMMENT, SHARE, and LIKE in order to stay with me on this journey into ourselves through bold interactions in the world of Nature. Go to the Menu above to review the many places that PBTA explores throughout the West. Each is a separate website and thus needs to be FOLLOWED independently. Please checkout SHOP APPAREL to outfit yourself with Adventure Wear. It is top quality, carries the logo and thus mantra, and helps support this website.

Happy Trails-

Roger Jenkins

Pursing Balance Through Adventure

Tanbark and Tin House Trail


Activity: Day Hike

8 miles, 2820’ elevation gain, 4 hour duration, rated Hard

Date: 10-5-21

Enchanting hike in an iconic forest much of which is along a babbling brook. I just love to hear the sound of tumbling water as I hike, it is so peaceful and serene.  Along the meandering trail is a sweet little falls if you continue up the creek a short ways just before the trail gets to the Donald H. McLoughlin Grove sign.  The hike provides a surreal experience in a red wood stand forest, and panoramic views of Big Sur near Tin House that will leave you with the feeling of awe.  

This was my second trip to Big Sur and my favorite area hike. I traveled from the trailhead, which is just across from Partington Cove, to Tin House which was a little past the half way mark shown in the pictured map.  Just passed Tin House is where I doubled back. Doing the loop would have dropped on a fire road and then onto Hwy 1. I would much rather hike trails in a forest then a fire road and then a busy roadway without shoulders.  The trail is steep and good trail boots are beneficial.  

Thimble Berry, which can be found along the journey, is Nature’s toilet paper, 6 ply according to the hiker I met.  I will try and keep that in mind should the occasion ever present itself.  

On the day I made this trek it was clear at sunrise, but not long afterwards the fog came in thick. That was about the time that I started the Tan Bark Trail. I was glad that my plans were for this hike up the mountainside and not at the ocean. The fog moved up the hill a bit, but luckily for me by the time I finished the hike the fog magically disappeared. So I could move on to other adventures. Thanks Mother Nature!

Pursuing Balance Through Adventure YouTube Channel. Click the Pic

Thimble Berry, which can be found along the journey, is Nature’s toilet paper.
Take a walk in the trees and smell the wild air. Nature’s ability to heal is greater than anyone has permitted you to believe.

Thanks for joining me in the forest, with the trees, the tumbling water, the ocean view, and the pine scent. Big Sur, what a place to be ’Pursuing Balance Through Adventure’. For more journeys into Nature and ourselves why not: LIKE, COMMENT, FOLLOW and SHARE that way you will be sure not to miss the Balance needed to combat this crazy, mixed up, busy existence we call life. PBTA travels all over the West, checkout the menu above to gain inspiration for your next embrace with Nature. Each location is a separate website and thus needs to be FOLLOWED independently. The cap I am wearing and other PBTA logo, top quality, adventure wear can be found at SHOP APPAREL.

Happy Trails-

Roger Jenkins

Pursuing Balance Through Adventure

McWay Falls



Activity: Scenic Ocean View, Nature Walk, Chasing Waterfalls

McWay Falls are jaw droppingly beautiful. To have the Big Sur Coastline, incredible in it’s own right, rugged, big firs, the blue Pacific, a gorgeous quiet little cove, so natural and completely unspoiled, and then add a waterfall that shoots the water out like a fire hose on to the golden sand… it is almost to perfect too be real, but I can assure you I saw it with my own eyes.

This is usually a short Easy hike of less than a mile and a half. While I was there most of the trail was closed, as it appeared the trail was in need of repair due to land moment. Even the park was closed, I believe because resources were stretched due to the California Wild Fires. I arrived early in the day, and was able to park at a turn out, off the road a short walk on the roadway. The waterfall was still visible, but I would call it more of a scenic walk. But wow, what a stunningly spectacular and special place. This spot is one of the iconic Big Sur photogenic sights.

I was glad that I went early. I spoke with a Forest Ranger while I was at McWay Falls and she suggested the trail “Tan Bark-Tin House”. While I was hiking up the mountain I looked back and the coastal fog was rolling in. It was so thick that I am not sure that the falls would still have been seen.

Magical Waterfalls and Ocean Waves are best viewed in motion click to go to the PBTA YouTube Clip.
“I love the sounds and the power of pounding water, whether it is the waves or a waterfall.” – Mike May

Thanks for being with me here at ’Pursuing Balance Through Adventure’ to experience this iconic Big Sur Waterfall as it pours dreams out on to the golden sands of this picture perfect cove. It is surreal that a place such as this even exists. For more unreal and profound experiences in places that can heal your soul and to come along for the adventure please do the following: COMMENT, FOLLOW, LIKE, and SHARE. For Adventure Wear with the logo you see on the back of my rig then checkout SHOP APPAREL. To see other spots that PBTA ventures to go to the menu above. Each location is a separate website and thus needs to be followed independently.

Happy Trails-

Roger Jenkins

Pursuing Balance Through Adventure

Northern Elephant Seal Rookery



It has been a little over 2 years since I shot the famous video clip that has since gone viral of an young adolescent male Northern Elephant Seal that I nicknamed ‘Darth Vader’, as part of my hike at Boucher Trail, a coastal trek that took me past the Piedras Blancas Light House as well. I have no idea why the short clip gained such notoriety, far more than anything else that I had painstakingly done as a Blog or Vlog. Then again I have no idea how algorithms work, for if I did I would have a far more reaching readership and followers.

So how did this 22 second clip become so popular that at one time if you did a search for Northern Elephant Seal this clip would appear on page 3 of the search right there with scientific studies, Wikipedia, and National Geographic? Search me, heck if I know… But it is as popular today as ever even without such an high search engine ranking. Could it be that this young male Northern Elephant Seal was absolutely perfect? I have researched other photo of these magnificent creatures and there are none that I could find as handsome of this young devil. His black skin glistened in the sun like the helmet of the Star Wars Arch Villain battling the Rebel Alliance in numerous George Lucas epic movies. The young Northern Elephant Seal “Darth Vader” in those 22 seconds charges up the beach towards my lens in complete control of the beach even at such an early stage in his life. No battle flesh wounds like those found on the scarred adult big bulls that fight for dominance of their galaxy and the right to mate. This perfect specimen of a young male flings his Jimmy Durante Schnozzola in the air as if to say I have arrived. The large nose, or the more scientific term proboscis, is one of the stand out features of the male once they have begun to mature.

So I journey back to this special place wondering if ’Darth Vader’ had fulfilled his destiny as Master of his Universe. I would like to think that he has. The Northern Elephant seals were all socializing together at the most southern end of the Piedras Blancas Rookery just north of San Simeon. It was a foggy day, but I could still make out the habits of the colony. Some resting, some in mock battle testing out their power. Was the Lord of the Empire among them? Hard to say, but wherever he is I would like to believe he is using the FORCE, as did his name sake, to rule his domain.

Must See According to the Internet. Click to View the Famous Clip on my
PBTA YouTube Channnel
“All good things are wild and free.” – David Thoreau 

I appreciate you joining me on this road trip journey back to Piedras Blancas Northern Elephant Seal Rookery on this moody Fall day in search of “Darth Vader”, whom blew up my ‘Pursuing Balance Through Adventure’ YouTube Channel with views. Relaxing and enjoying nature in this manner is certainly a nice way to rebalance our lives from our other hectic everyday existence. I certainly felt the balance viewing these wondrous creatures in their natural habitat. The California Wildfires had filled the central portion of our state, and beyond, with thick smog making the air unhealthy to breath, so to arrive at the Northern California Coast was literally a breath of fresh air. To continue to breath easy I invite you to join me for more NoCal Hiking Adventures by doing these ever so simple tasks: LIKE, COMMENT, FOLLOW and SHARE. If you peruse the menu above you will see many of the locales that PBTA ventures to. If you need to bundle up for cool trips to the coast checkout my PBTA Adventure gear at SHOP APPAREL. The hats and shirts are top quality and carry the logo and mantra.

Happy Trails-

Roger Jenkins

Pursuing Balance Through Adventure

Secret Cove


Activity: Day Hike, Sun Bathing, Swimming

Date: 6-26-20

Lake Tahoe is an incredibly beautiful place. I have skied many of the great Ski Resorts including a trip that my family, and one of my best friends, got snowed in during my college years and were trapped having to add even more days of skiing powder- poor things right? There was so much snow that we could ski right off the hill, down the streets to the Casino that we were staying at.

I raced a Hobie 14 National Championship, (small fast catamaran sailboats), on the waters of Lake Tahoe also during my college days. Then later I raced in US Sailing’s ‘Alter Cup’, a Championship of Champions as well as the Hobie 20 Miracle National Championship on the always beautiful, but sometimes tricky and fickle waters, of this gorgeous place.

Now fast forward to this particular outing. After a Summer Excursion along the West Coast I decided to include Lake Tahoe before heading back to SoCal.

After a fun hike at Picnic Rock just off Tahoe Rim Trail I decided a dip in the Lake would be great! I heard that parking for Secret Cove, certainly one of the most beautiful spots on the lake, is difficult. You can either try to get into a pay lot which is actually for another area and then hike over to this spot or park on the road above Secret Cove. I was there fairly early, so there were some spots left, but not many. You have to be careful about how and where you park or you risk being ticketed. As far as the trail goes it doesn’t seem like there is any main trail, but basically a free for all. I suppose all trails lead to Secret Cove? It is short, but steep hike so bring boots or at least sturdy shoes.

This spot is magnificent- the blues and greens of the clear water is breathtaking. The shore line has a couple small sandy areas, but mostly it is lined with boulders. The boulders are great for stretching out on and basking in the sun. The water in the Summer is a brisk 65 degrees, so to say it is refreshing is an understatement. Did I fail to mention that the beach is clothing optional? I suppose that is why it is a secret.

Thanks for joining me ‘Pursing Balance Through Adventure’ at one of the truly spectacular bodies of water, Lake Tahoe, for a dip in the lake. What an absolutely gorgeous setting evergreens, blue green water of the cove, deep blue water beyond all framed by wonderful mountains. Stick around for more adventures using the following means: LIKE, SHARE, FOLLOW, and COMMENT. I can hardly wait for another NoCal Adventure. In the mean time checkout the menu for other areas that PBTA ventures to. PBTA top quality gear can be found here: SHOP APPAREL.

Happy Trails-

Roger Jenkins

Pursuing Balance Through Adventure

Tahoe Rim Trail to Picnic Rock


Activity: Day Hike, View Point

Distance 3 miles, elevation change 750’, >2 hours, rated Moderate

Date: June 26, 2020

It was a spur of the moment decision to head for Lake Tahoe as part of my Summer Expedition of the West. It certainly was on my radar, but everything was pretty much up in the air with the Covid-19 Pandemic. It wasn’t clear what trails were open, what type of permits were needed or how difficult they might be to ascertain at the last minute. I had just spent a few weeks in the Pacific North West and was working my way back to SoCal. I left the Mount Shasta area and researched a spot that I knew would be open to hiking. It sounded intriguing being labeled as the best bang for the buck basically. Tahoe Rim Trail to Picnic Rock Viewpoint is a quick and easy hike with spectacular views of Lake Tahoe.

During my drive my phone went off with an Emergency Alert regarding Severe Weather. The sky and the clouds looked peculiar, and the wind began to howl. A lot of dust and dirt was being thrown about, but there was no zero visibility dust storm that I was alerted to, at least right where I was.

It was after dusk, and there was lightning off in the distance when I arrived at the trailhead. When I read that a bear had been spotted at this location along with the possibility of a severe storm I decided why not sleep in the car? The answer to that question came soon enough, well came hour after hour of aggravation.

Trying to sleep in an Audi is an absolutely miserable experience. It would have been better to brave inclement weather, and claws and fangs then suffering through a night of torture scrunched up against an uncomfortable arm rest in the side, face plastered against the window, and rises in the back bench seat in all the wrong spots. At least fearing for one’s life with nothing to protect you other than a few yards of cloth would provide a better chance for slumber, even if it might be more of the permanent type. So, needless to say I got an earlier start to my hike the following morning.

It was a delightful hike up through the fragrant fir trees winding along a portion of the Tahoe Rim Trail. A bit of a scramble at the top, just after exiting on to the Spur Trail provided outstanding views of Lake Tahoe. 

I shared my breakfast on Picnic Rock with a black lizard, chipmunk type squirrel, Blue Jay, and heard a Blue Grouse sounding his mating call while taking in the deep blue Lake Tahoe framed by the Sierra Nevada.

I might inform you that upon my return to the trailhead at about 8:30 AM there were only a few spots left in this limited parking area, so plan accordingly. But a nice little hike indeed.

I was only at Lake Tahoe a short portion of my Summer Expedition of the West, but how I long to return. Shall we return together? You can you know with the following actions: LIKE, FOLLOW, COMMENT and SHARE. Look to the menu above for locations in the West providing inspiration to untangle- freeing yourself of the burdens of responsibility, taste nature’s breath, feel the warmth of sunshine, experience expansive vistas, stretch your legs, open your mind and shut down the noise of civilization- if only for awhile. It’s called ‘Pursuing Balance Through Adventure’. You can get the soon to be your favorite adventure wear at SHOP APPAREL, which of course helps to support the endeavor of sharing this message.

Happy Trails-

Roger Jenkins

Pursuing Balance Through Adventure

McCloud WaterFalls Trail



Activity: Day Hike, chasing waterfalls

Distance :4 miles, elevation gain: 350’, 90 minutes duration, rated Easy

Date: June 25, 2020

This out and back Easy hike has the extra bonus of not one, not just two, but listen to this, three beautiful waterfalls in the Mount Shasta area. The trails winds along the McCloud River at the southern base of Mount Shasta. That whole Siskiyou County is a very special place. The McCloud Waterfalls Trail is a beautiful trail through spectacular woods just off of the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway (Hwy 89).

You could actually drive to a scenic overlook of each of the wonderful falls, but why in the heck would you do that if you can hike it, for goodness sake!?

Chasing Waterfalls in the Siskiyou in the shadow of magnificent Mount Shasta, that is ‘Pursuing Balance Through Adventure’. Waterfalls just tug at your heart strings like few things can. The music of the cascading water as it takes the plunge and crashes over the rocks below beckons throughout the forest, as you breath in the pine scent and drink in all the sights, sounds and the experience.

I started out at a parking area at the McCloud Lower Falls. This area is popular because it makes a great swimming and cliff jumping area. The next falls along the trail is the McCloud Middle Falls. The waterfall is 44’ high and has the distinction of being the widest in California at 120’ across.

There is a campground along the trail, Fowlers Campground and the folks there looked very content with the hiking, swimming, and just relaxing. This isn’t the first encampment there as a one time in the past there were cottages and a historic hotel. Besides that you can trace back to native peoples using the area for hunting and fishing for a couple thousand years.

The third falls is Upper McCloud Falls. There are other waterfalls in the Shasta-Trinity National Forest area, but to have three falls right together and with the amount of water tumbling over them from the McCloud River makes this a must see. I added a little to my hike as I wanted to see the view from above and climbed the trail each time to the observation area above. I also went a little past the trail along the river which was also quite nice.

Still pictures alone don’t cut. You have to have video of waterfalls.

Lower McCloud Falls is popular with swimmers and cliff jumpers.
McCloud Middle Falls
Upper McCloud Falls
McCloud Falls is on the southern base of Mt Shasta

If you like waterfalls, mountains, forests, and nature than LIKE, COMMENT, SHARE, and FOLLOW. Checkout the menu above as PBTA travels to many splendid places that will leave you with a feeling of restlessness that you too want to hit the trail, or I am more than happy to bring you along through my stories of adventure, pictures and video that don’t do the places justice, but I try. Each of the locations in the menu are a separate site and thus need to be FOLLOWED independently. Please go to SHOP APPAREL and pick out a hat or moisture wicking high performance shirt. They are top quality and it supports my efforts. Also just added are cool t-shirts.

Happy Trails-

Roger Jenkins

Pursuing Balance Through Adventure

Ney Springs and Faery falls


Activity: Day Hike, Scenic View

Distance: 1.5 miles, 250’ elevation change, > 1 hour duration, rated Easy

The whole area around Mount Shasta is teeming with splendid experiences. Mount Shasta itself has a spiritual vibe that is quite strong and has been drawing people to it since the early Native Americans, whom continue to regard this area as sacred.

I have to say that with whimsical names like Ney Springs and Faery Falls you fully expect it to be both charming and magical and it does not disappoint. What an enchanting little falls. Waterfalls are always special and this quiet place filled only with the rushing, cascading sound of a liquid symphony fills you senses. The warm summer air, the cool mist, the chilled water, the fresh earthy smell, the sublime vision, the music of the water flow is enough to leave you spellbound.

This is an short, easy hike which almost puts it more in the category of sight seeing rather than hiking. However, the area is fantastic, and the woods are very nice. There are some road signs directing you to the falls which is near Lake Siskiyou, but once you get close it is a bit tricky because there is nothing to tell what you should do once you find the little pull out on the dirt road, which by the way would not fit too many cars if it was busy. I was thrown off and ended up walking around for a bit and finally had to ask someone. I had mistakenly thought that I should follow the sound of the rushing stream, which was to the left, but the trail you want is going up to the right. Once you are on the trail there will be a path going down to Ney Springs which isn’t much, but it is interesting. It leaves you pondering what exactly is the story behind it. Then not much farther up the trail you will first hear the falls, and then start to get teasing glimpses of the tumbling water. There is a little path heading down to this place of wonder. A nice little adventure to recharge the batteries when pursuing balance from a perplexing and complicated world.

Click Video

All that is left, which the forest hasn’t reclaimed, from the Ney Springs Resort of the late 1800’s are a few steps, a fountain on a wall and a cistern where the Ney Spring water was channeled. The Ney Springs Resort was a health and wellness destination valuing the highest silica content in it’s mineral water known to occur in natural ground water.

“There is no better place to find yourself then sitting by a waterfall and listening to it’s music

Places like Ney Springs and Faery Falls in the great Siskiyou are filled with enchantment and wonder. Thanks for joining me on this quick jaunt into this bewitching location. Got Adventure? Tell me about some of your favorite hikes. In exchange for this value I offer up the Pursuing Balance Through Adventure Menu above for spots all over the West, (each is an independent site and thus needs to be FOLLOWED separately), and stay tuned because there just might be some more fascinating falls in this blog‘s near future along with a Lake so amazing I can hardly wait to get back there. So FOLLOW, LIKE, COMMENT and SHARE. See the cap in the drawing? Go to SHOP APPAREL and you can not only have a cool, top quality PBTA logo hat, but help support this blog, which believe me needs supporting, lol.

Happy Trails-

Roger Jenkins

Pursuing Balance Through Adventure

Pursuing Balance Through Adventure