Bears, big trees, and some amazing vantage points were the things we most looked forward to on this recent trip to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. There’s nothing more relaxing than a long walk in the woods with a loved one. Quiet conversations and easy moments of wonder while discovering things both big and small. A tiny spider, a giant pinecone, lush meadows, fallen trees worn away from the inside, that amazing view…it’s easy to get lost in the slower pace.
There are plenty of hiking options that will fit your desired level in all areas of the park. The river photos above were taken near Cedar Grove on the Zumwalt Meadow Trail. We got there late in the day and were rewarded with a beautiful view of the meadow soaked in that golden glow Californian afternoons are so famous for. We saw our first bear on this trip over by the Giant Forest and Lodgepole area. It was early morning so the light wasn’t very good but it was wonderful to just watch as the bear mosied on in search of breakfast. When visiting please be bear aware.
We then headed over to The Big Trees Trail, a short but beautiful hike that you can loop together with others to make it longer. Checking out the fallen trees was a favorite part of the weekend, even in death these giant trees are so full of life.
We spent a good while on one of the trails over by Grant Grove exploring the inside of a fallen Sequoia. It looks like Oliver’s in a cave in the below photo but it’s actually a hollowed out Sequoia. Like the trees, both parks are quite large so it’s best to plan out ahead of time the areas that you want to explore. Driving times between the different areas are lenghty but gorgeous.
Definitely make time to climb to the vertigo inducing top of Moro Rock for the stellar views. Photos don’t do it justice. Just go. A word of warning though, it can get crowded so plan accordingly.
Also visit The Peaks Restaurant at the Wuksachi Lodge if time allows. After a long day on the trails it feels down right luxurious.
Know before you go: