What's a week without the continued adventures of KCET's Golden State-trotting hero, Huell Howser? It's like weekend without sunshine, that's what. This week, Huell crisscrosses the state, hitting the best and most beautiful of our state's parks.
Monday, June 4 @ 7:30 PM -- "Ano Nuevo"
What makes this state reserve so special? Easy: elephant seals, the occasionally ALF-looking seaside baskers known for making noise on NorCal beaches. In fact, Ano Nuevo, just 55 miles south of San Francisco, happens to be one of the largest elephant seal breeding colonies in the mainland U.S.
Watch the blubber jiggle in this home video of Ano Nuevo elephant seals:
Tuesday, June 5 @ 7:30 PM -- "Fern Canyon"
Way up north, about 50 miles north of Eureka, Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park offers a lush paradise that looks downright primeval. It has to be seen to be believed, and that's not even the only attraction. There's also a mighty impressive driftwood collection, as Huell demonstrates in this preview:
Wednesday, June 6 @ 7:30 PM -- "Asilomar"
No, not Sylmar. It's Asilomar in Monterey County, home of breathtaking views and buildings designed by the late, great Julia Morgan, who's not only one of the most talented female architects in history but also the designer responsible for Hearst Castle.
Check out a promo video showing off Asilomar's serene beauty:
Thursday, June 7 @ 7:30 PM -- "John Muir Home"
Speaking of parks, we likely wouldn't have a National Park System as we do today were it not for John Muir. This cofounder of the Sierra Club spent the last 24 years of his life on Martinez, up in Contra Costa County, and today his striking Victoria Mansion home is a State and National Historic Landmark.
Follow along with this random dude's walking tour of John Muir's home:
Friday, June 8 @ 7:30 PM -- Chautauqua
Tucked away in Los Angeles's County's own Pacific Palisades is Temescal Gateway Park. Take a tour, of course, but since it's Huell, you know it's not just a look at pretty scenery. In this episode, Huell explains how the park figures into the early 20th-century Chautauqua movement.
Get a look at what this park looks like:
Saturday, June 9 @ 5 PM -- "Mt. Wilson"
Logically, you wouldn't think that high-powered telescopes and marine layer-powered smog blankets go together, but you'd be forgetting about L.A.'s prominence in the recent history of astronomy. Let Huell remind you with this visit to the top of Mt. Wilson near Pasadena. And okay -- maybe Mt. Wilson isn't a park, but you can't say that Mt. Wilson doesn't offer sweeping views of the California landscape that could rival those of most parks.
Watch a preview here:
Sunday, June 10, @ 7 PM -- "Mono Lake Today"
Huell first visited Mono Lake back in 1992. How has it changed in the twentysomething years that have passed? It's a then-and-now look at how preservation efforts have made Mono Lake's water levels high today than they've been in years.
Watch a preview of Huell and Mono Lake, then and now, here: