Giant Sequoia National Monument was created on April 15, 2000 to preserve the remaining Sequoia Groves and forest outside of the National Parks. Highway 190 provides a scenic drive high in the Sierra Nevada to the Sequoia's with stunning mountain vistas and recreational areas along the Tule River.
Mariposa Grove is the largest Sequoia grove in Yosemite National Park. Its most famous resident 'Grizzly Giant' is estimated to be 1900-2400 years old, and is the 25th largest in the world. Abraham Lincoln famously protected these trees on June 30, 1864 as an Act of Congress. Stunning trails wind through this enchanting forest of gentle giants.
Big Trees Trail is an easy 2/3 mile walk that winds through Round Meadow in Sequoia National Park. With its towering giant sequoias and lush green meadows, it is the perfect way to immerse yourself in the Giant Forest.
A walk around the General Grant Grove of Kings Canyon National Park is the perfect way to experience gentle giants up close. Several Giant Sequoia's surround winding trails of lush forest leading to the second largest tree in the world, General Grant, which measures 268 feet tall and 34 feet in diameter. President Coolidge named this Sequoia the Nation's Christmas tree in 1926 and has been famous ever since.
Congress Trail in Sequoia National Park is a great place to get close to Giant Sequoia's. Starting at the General Sherman Tree, the largest tree on Earth, the trail winds through impressive groves of some of the largest sequoia's in the park. Names like 'The House', 'The Senate' and 'The President' strand give the trail its name. Crowds get smaller the further you hike on the easy 3 mile loop which can be done in varying lengths.
Tokopah Falls is the tallest waterfall in Sequoia National Park at 1,200 feet. A stunning 1.7 mile trail each way follows the Kaweah River up the high country of the Sierra Nevada to the base of the falls. Crowds will fade as you surround massive granite cliffs covered in pristine forest. Go in the Spring for the most thunderous falls.
Big Stump Trail is an important reminder of the need to preserve landscapes through National Parks. This trail in Kings Canyon National Park contains many Giant Sequoia Stumps that were logged in the 1800's. The most famous stump, The Mark Twain Tree, was sawed by two men for 13 days in 1891 and estimated to be 1,350 years old. A ladder takes you to the top to see the rings and massive size of the sequoia. These trees would still be going strong if not selfishly destroyed.
Redwood Mountain Grove in Kings Canyon National Park is the largest Giant Sequoia Grove in the world. The grove also features the tallest sequoia at 311 feet. A windy dirt road takes you to the trailhead making it one of the least visited in the park, perfect for those seeking solitude.
Crescent Meadow was named the 'Gem of the Sierra' by John Muir. Trails wind along this perfect meadow of Sequoia National Park which provides necessary habitat to keep the gentle giants alive. This pristine alpine sight will leave you breathless.
Tharp's Log is a hollowed giant sequoia tree in Sequoia National Park. Led here by the Yokuts Native Americans, Hale Tharp was the first modern pioneer to discover the Giant Forest. He lived in this log 'cabin' in the summertime from 1861 to 1890, the year the park was established. Adjacent Log Meadow was the perfect spot for Tharp to raise his cattle. This National Register of Historic Places Landmark is a great mild hike for any visit to the park.