Wild About Jack London Park

Explore State Parks With New Virtual Reality Tour

LEGACY: The ruins of the Wolf House are one of the many attractions at Jack London State Park. Photo by Sarah Stierch

Some call him a literary hero; contemporary reevaluations call him “problematic,” but author Jack London’s friends called him “Wolf.” And why not? He was obsessed with the canine—from book titles like Son of the Wolf and The Sea Wolf to his famously ill-fated 15,000-square-foot manse dubbed “The Wolf House”—London had a lupine sensibility. Fortunately, the California state park that bears his name does not.

Though flora and fauna abound at the 48-acre Jack London State Historic Park, wolves are rarely seen. However, their cousins, dogs of the leashed variety, are welcomed on the park’s two historic trails. Short on distance but long on stories, one trail leads to the Wolf House, which burned down in 1913 before London and his wife Charmian’s scheduled move-in. The other trail starts at the ranch’s upper parking lot and leads to the property’s barns, cottage, winery ruins, silos, and “Pig Palace,” a circular feed house that could accommodate up to 200 hogs. A London-themed museum and a bookstore offering his complete works (as well as books by Charmian) buttresses the historical side of the experience.

Moreover, thanks to a partnership between California State Parks and “interpretive experience design firm” Timelooper Inc., the park offers an app-based augmented reality tour, which visitors can download. It brings the park to life with digital animations, Jack and Charmian London holograms, historic photographs, and 3D models. The app comes in Apple iOS and Android flavors (search for “Virtual Adventurer”) and boasts experiences for   eight additional state parks. It’s like having a virtual park ranger  in your pocket.

Don’t miss Call of the Wild Day at Jack London State Historic Park with FREE admission on Sunday, May 19, 2024. The event celebrates nature, education, family and the history of Jack and Charmian London’s Beauty Ranch with a free guided hike and fun for the entire family.


2400 London Ranch Rd, Glen Ellen

General admission starts at $10

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