In Times Like These, Why Is It Necessary to Talk About Trees?

Event Details

  • Date:
  • Venue: Muir Woods National Monument

This event is part of our Spiritual Ecology for Millennials Series where we visit sites around the Bay Area where young people are working to positively impact the environment. These visits are hosted by millennials and are for millennials.

Visiting sites within the redwood forest, juxtaposed with poetry readings and critical discussion, we’ll co-develop an alternate narrative of Muir Woods' history. Together, we will consider how ancestry, power, and money (and many other variables) contributed to making Muir Woods as we find it today, and how we might envision the forest's future. Considering the past -- from Miwok villages to land ownership, from logging to conservation -- Muir Woods has a complex (and in some cases untold) history. We’ll share personal stories and examine our own history in relation to land and place.

This walk is inspired and informed by Adrienne Rich’s insightful poem published in 1995, “What Kind of Times Are These.”

Led by Ranger Laura Booth: Laura grew up on a small farm in suburban Pennsylvania. She went to college in New York City, where she fell in love with urban nature. Since then, she has studied birds of prey migrating over the Golden Gate with a 30-year community science project, inventoried a 50-acre old-growth forest in the Bronx, and connected a diverse community of visitors to the stories at Muir Woods. She likes eating watermelon, reading poems, and making zines.

Getting to Muir Woods: Carpooling is recommended (and we can help coordinate, email You can take the West Marin Stagecoach to one of the stops on Panoramic Highway and hike down into the Woods (allow time on either end, it is at least 45 mins down and more back up). Taking Uber/Lyft  is also an option (but you must schedule a pickup for your return ride in advance -- there is no cellular service or WiFi in the Woods).