The Giants in Sequoia National Park
Updated: Jul 18
Sequoia National Park is named for the Giant Sequoia trees that populate it. The western slopes of the Sierra Nevada mountains are the only place in the world where they grow. The Giant sequoia is the largest tree by volume with the Coastal redwood in Northern California being the tallest. The most massive tree in the world "The General Sherman Tree" is located here. There are many hikes and don't miss Crystal Cave.
The Generals Hwy is the road that connects the 2 parks and their giant groves. As you drive down the Generals Hwy from Hwy 180 there are many pull-outs where you can get out and explore. You can’t really appreciate just how massive these trees are until you stand next to one.
Kings Canyon Hiking Guide Kings Canyon NP Guide
Sequoia National Park is home to some of the most awe-inspiring natural wonders in the world, including the Giant Forest, a breathtaking grove of giant sequoia trees. The Giant Forest is one of the most popular attractions in Sequoia National Park and for good reason. With over 8,000 giant sequoias, including some of the largest trees in the world, this forest is a must-visit destination for anyone looking to experience the majesty of nature.
We began our adventure in the Giant Forest at the Giant Forest Museum. Here we learned about the history of the park, the ecology of the forest, and the efforts to protect this unique ecosystem. We also pick up a trail map to plan our hiking route through the forest.
One of the highlights of the Giant Forest is the General Sherman Tree, which is the largest tree in the world by volume. Standing at over 275 feet tall and over 36 feet in diameter, this massive tree is estimated to be over 2,000 years old. It is a sight that you will never forget and a perfect photo opportunity.
Another popular activity in the Giant Forest is hiking. With over 40 miles of trails, there is something for everyone, from easy nature walks to strenuous backcountry treks. The Congress Trail is a great option for those looking for a moderate hike that showcases some of the largest and oldest trees in the forest. This trail is a 3-mile loop that takes you past the President Tree, the House Group, and the Senate Group, all of which are named after political figures.
Crystal Cave is accessed from a road off Generals Highway not too far from the Giant Forest Museum. There is a steep half-mile walk down a path through a beautiful shaded forest. At the bottom just before you get to the cave you are treated to some small cascading falls and it's a beautiful area to just sit and relax. Crystal Cave is an excellent marble cavern with a half-mile loop trail through it. The only way to visit is on a guided tour so be sure to get your tickets before you get to the cave. You can get your tickets here. Remember the steep half-mile walk down, well you have to walk back up but it isn't too bad. You can take your time and enjoy the walk through the shaded forest back to the parking area.
Take a drive down Crescent Meadow Road to the parking lot and Hike out to Moro Rock with its magnificent view. We had been to the park before but never made the time to do this short drive and hike. We were with our daughter and her family on this trip and it was a lot of fun walking up the path to the top and the viewing area. The view was magnificent.
In conclusion, a trip to Sequoia National Park is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that everyone should add to their bucket list. The park is home to some of the largest and oldest trees in the world, including the General Sherman Tree, which is the most massive tree in the world. With over 40 miles of hiking trails, Crystal Cave, and stunning views like Moro Rock, there is something for everyone in this park. It is a place where you can disconnect from the world and immerse yourself in the majesty of nature. A trip to Sequoia National Park is an unforgettable adventure that will stay with you for the rest of your life.
Now on to the 3rd leg of the journey, "Huntington Lake With Friends"
Lorna’s Tips and Lessons
This is where I have seen the most bears. So much of the time it has been on the side of the road while driving. My tip is to keep your binoculars & camera in a place you don’t have to dig for. Often that eagle or bear is traveling and you don’t want to miss it while you are trying to find your binoculars or camera.