Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Sequoia/Kings Canyon - National Park of the Week #2

Sequoia and Kings Canyon are actually two national parks, but they share a long border, a website, and are managed together.

Sequoia/Kings Canyon National Park
Location: SE California in the High Sierras.  200 mi. N of Los Angeles, 70 mi. east of Fresno
Area: 868,000 acres
Major Attractions: Most massive trees on the planet, Incredible canyons, Beautiful alpine lakes, Mt. Whitney (tallest mountain in the Lower 48), Pacific Crest Trail, John Muir Trail
Miles of Trail:  800+
My Favorite Parts: Rae Lakes, Hell For Sure Pass, Giant Sequoia Trees
Getting There: Roughly two hours east of Fresno on CA-198 or CA-180

Sequoia/Kings Canyon National Park is one of the jewels of our National Park System, ranking up there with Yellowstone, Olympic, and Yosemite.  One of the earliest national parks formed, its uniquely massive trees and jaw-dropping vistas were easily recognized as special and worth of protection.  In addition to housing the world's most massive trees (N. California has the tallest, Mexico the fattest, S. California the oldest (though this is hotly debated in old tree circles)), the park has the highest peak in the Lower 48, and lots of incredible high alpine lakes.  The park is a great place to visit at all times of the year with lots of options for winter fun including snowshoeing, sledding, and cross-country skiing.

Click below for my less formal pieces (with lots of photos!) on:
The Rae Lakes Loop
Snowshoeing to Pear Lake
Hell For Sure Pass

A tree a family could live in.  Not the largest tree in the park or even close.

Hell for Sure Lake

Route to Pear Lake

Near Pear Lake

Click for Larger Version

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