We decided yesterday to take a last minute trip to Sequoia National Park to spend the day hiking among the Giant Sequoia's. We stayed at a $50/night motel in Three Rivers, CA which is about a 30 min to an hour drive depending on road conditions. It was my first experience driving with tire chains on icy and snow covered roads, but everything went smoothly and I drove really slow. It was nice going on New Years day because there weren't many people up there and we enjoyed seeing and playing in the snow.
Once inside the park it's fairly easy to find the General Sherman Tree by simply following the signs. You have to park about 10 minutes from the trail head and a free shuttle will drop you off and pick you up. General Sherman is the largest tree by volume in the world. It also does not have the thickest trunk and it not the tallest. It's about 0.2 miles away from the trail head and there were several people there to see it.
We hiked maybe another 2 miles or so on an incredibly beautiful trail to see The President. This trail had a few small frozen waterfalls, a fallen Sequioa which was carved so you could walk through it, lots of beautiful fir's and giant Sequioas all around.
Above-a tree that is still hanging on to life after being badly damaged by fire.
Courtney by an unnamed tree in the Giant Forest
Courtney... hugging a tree
The President was just featured in National Geographic and had a poster inside the magazine which captured the entire tree. I liked this picture so much that I framed it and put it on my wall. It also gave me the itch to go out and see it for myself.
The President is the third largest tree by volume and has more foliage than General Sherman. It was hit by lightning at some point, which killed off the apex and Jin'ed the top. Four new branches grew out near the top becoming massive and making up much of the new apex and crown. This gives the tree a unique appearance.
Here's me looking up at the trees foliage
This is the view looking up, hard to see everything from down below. How cool would it be to climb up there?! But also really scary...
Courtney and I got to meet the President with no one else in sight. There's a sign in front of the tree, but no fence or other marking. I really enjoyed that fact that we got to see the tree without lots of people around. If you end up making this trek, I'd highly recommend bringing a lunch and having a picnic near the tree.
Anyways, it's time to get back to those little trees I have in pots. I'm looking forward to a two day BIB workshop this weekend and then the BIB Exhibit later this month on the19th & 20th. If you get a chance you should definitely come check it out, there will be some fantastic trees on display- http://bayislandbonsai.com/bib-annual-exhibit/
Wishing you a Very Happy New Year!!!