Yes, the forest is supposed to be big. REAL big. So it's possible the animals living there would
have different names for different parts. It's also possible that they might not have been to every part of the forest. Griffon's troop travels (but many of the other "feral" groups sit in more permanent locations)... I don't know about the regular occupants of the forest, animals like Jack and Jessica, or Felix. How much they travel about.
The Haven region was supposed to be north of El Dorado county, CA
(since that's approximately where RV is located). So yeah... northeastern California, perhaps even southern Oregon (though that might be pushing it).
The forest itself is intended to be an entirely fictional place. So, there might not actually be mountains directly north of El Dorado, might not be coniferous forest, etc. Characteristics are ours to distinguish.
There's a mountainous region between RV and Haven (and also "cupping" the Haven area to the west as well, I believe). To get to Haven from RV (or vice versa), you could go through the mountains directly (perhaps through a natural pass(?), or else just by having to do a lot of hardcore hiking and risk-taking) or go around (which was the case of my Felix and Pavelle). Grif's group went around as well when they were fleeing RV, but they went to the west end of the mountain range, whereas Pavelle/Felix went northeast to a city (where Pavelle's mother was hospitalized), then left that city and headed west, through the close edge of the forest. I'll draw something up to give you an idea of that, added shortly...
EDIT: It's a terrible approximation and not detailed, but at least it gives the general geography of the region.
light green = general forest
darker green = denser/thicker forest
blue = water (lake, river, stream, etc.)
yellow = farmland (according to the RV map)
purple w/ peaks/bumps = mountains
grey/buildings = city
"bold/thick" x = dirt circle (where Pavelle, Felix, Conker, Jessica, Jack all met)
"unbolded" x's (w/ arrow) = old camp --> new camp (note that new camp in is darker green, so thicker forest)
The arrows to the sides (to the west "unbolded" and to the east "bolded") of the southern mountains just give an idea the way that, respectively, Grif's camp traveled from the RV area, and Pavelle/Felix traveled from RV.
White/uncolored is just blank. To be determined if needed. If not, it'll probably just stay the same.
And... sorry if you think it's too vague. I'm not very skilled with drawing and such.
I suppose I should've given some sort of ratio for like, distance. But... just know that where the "bold" x is, that's like... a two-day walk/hike from the edge of the forest near to the city.
Probably a more extensive map later? We could all choose to add landmarks to this if we wished, or if any were suggested.
As for the forest being temperate... I'd like to say yes, it is. The summers are green, and it is mostly composed of coniferous trees (though there are some exceptions, like the birches Felix mentioned) and plants low to the ground (like ferns or the nut/berry bushes that have been mentioned by multiple characters as a food source), tall grass, moss/lichen, mushrooms(?); at the rivers/water sources there are cattails and the usual fare. There might be some meadow areas, but I'm not certain. I'd like to say the trees are generally moderately close together, but of course that fluctuates (as in the area that the new camp is set up, where the trees are much more dense). It gets a lot of snow/precipitation in winter as Rachav mentioned (thanks to the nearby mountains, which also explain the numerous trickling water sources, streams and such), and the winters can be harsh.
There was an earthquake once (not that there couldn't be another, heh), but I don't know how this particular forest would have been affected, if at all. That was pretty far downstate, I want to say here
, and it was mentioned by Rachav that the camp moved upstate "into the wilder areas where they could be away from human civilization." Since RV is a relatively new neighborhood (at least I think it is...?), I can only assume that the camp moved to a place where there weren't humans nearby, and that the area became developed as the (close to 20) years passed and human population spread closer to the mountains.
Just thought I might bring that up, as you guys have page-long posts here, and I'm noticing how abnormal that is from the other RPs...
I generally post long responses (which is an understatement, but whatever). If anyone has a problem with it, they can tell me and I can try to cut it down. That's just the way I write, is all (always have ^^'). As long as the people here don't care, then I don't know why we should change our style to fit the other RP's, unless the mods don't like it...? I myself don't prefer responses to be any particular length. One-liners (as long as they have substance and progress the RP) are fine, and so are long paragraphs.