Sitting between the small towns of Crescent City and Fort Dick is a 2.5 mile remote roadway that is sparking enthusiasm from the locals in the northwest corner of California. The road is aptly named Wonder Stump Road and the locals are preparing to defend the redwoods that make it one of the most beautiful roadways in the world.
Due to the massive redwoods lining the roadway, maintenance is made very difficult for county road crews. And when the locals noticed a surveyor marking trees along the road for removal, they braced to battle for the roadway they love.
The road is now lined with signs that read “We like our trees right where they” and “Leave our trees alone!” posted by residents who oppose any tree removal on Wonder Stump Road. Locals have also voiced their opposition to any tree removal along the road in an online petition that is circulating the internet.
“We the undersigned, realizing the historical, aesthetic, and natural beauty of Del Norte County’s Wonder Stump Road, wish that this road be left at it’s present width and condition, only being paved and maintained as necessary and little else. We do not agree to the widening of the road or the removal of any islands or trees along the length of Wonder Stump Road,” reads the petition.
While it can’t be argued that everyone wants to keep the unmatched beauty of the road intact, driving conditions could be dangerous without the proper maintenance. Due to the roots protruding under the concrete, water drainage remains a issue, one that cannot be fixed without tree removal. There’s also the issue of road cleanup from tree branches falling, another safety concern. And without property maintenance and eventual widening of the roadway, the water could erode the road away completely.
For the residents that live near Wonder Stump Road, the safety issues are insignificant and don’t warrant tree removal. They say that people drive slow to take in the beauty and believe the road workers are just sick of the extra time they spend on the road.
“It just bugs me because it seems like they’re going to come out here one day and start working and nobody will have anything to say about it,” said local Bryan Stanley to the Napa Valley Register.
Just a mile away sits the Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, where the pristine redwood forest is protected under law. But for Wonder Stump Road, the locals are willing to fight to keep the unprotected redwoods in place.
“There is nothing like it anywhere,” said Susan McKay to Fox 28 News. “And once you change it, it’s gone forever.”