There will be no food service in Sequoia until the lodge reopens, and travelers are advised to bring food from outside the parks. There’s so much to see in Sequoia National Park, so lace up your hiking boots, grab your camera, and get ready for two days of adventure: here’s your perfect Sequoia itinerary! After about 6 miles, turn right onto Crescent Meadow Road and follow signs to the Moro Rock Trailhead. Some secondary roads have tighter restrictions, and so does the 12 miles between Potwisha Campground and Giant Forest Museum, where the maximum recommended length is 22 feet. Book your tickets to tour Crystal Cave at least 48 hours in advance to reserve your spot. Moreover, early visit enables you to explore the place without crowds that start appearing around noon. You can continue on to other national parks like Joshua Tree and Death Valley easily based in Southern California as well. . If you’re flying in and planning to visit Sequoia National Park and Yosemite together, which I recommend as they’re quite close together, I suggest renting a car at LAX if you don’t have your own. Although the viewpoint is fenced in, it can trigger sensations of discomfort for some. Day Hiking: There are plenty of trails to hike throughout Sequoia National Park. Any time of year, guests are welcome to drive through Sequoia and Kings Canyon to Moro Rock, a scenic overlook towering over the parks with panoramic views of California on one side and Nevada on the other. Rome2rio is a door-to-door travel information and booking engine, helping you get to and from any location in the world. Insider Tip: Be advised, entering from this part of the park is not recommended for vehicles over 22 ft in length. Best Hikes at Sequoia National Park: General Sherman Tree (0.5 Miles) Get ready to whip out your Phone or camera, because the General Sherman is the largest tree in the entire world, by volume! You’ve definitely earned a little time with your feet up! First, you avoid traffic on your way to Sequoia National Park. Editor’s Note: If you only have one day in Sequoia National Park, get an earlier start and combine all of Day 1, skipping the Giant Forest Museum, with General Sherman and Congress Trail from Day 2. This is where we leave you to discover your next adventure — either in Kings Canyon National Park as you head north or on your way back home after enjoying a short visit to Sequoia National Park. At Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks, recreational opportunities expand dramatically from late spring to early fall. One of the side trails we opted to do was The Thorpe’s Tree loop. There are no Giant Sequoias here, but still plenty of exciting attractions to explore. The hike to General Sherman is an easy ½-mile walk down a paved trail. Eternal Arrival is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon. You can find campgrounds, cabins, and hotels in the national park, in the national forest, at the national monument, and on private property outside the park boundaries. You’ve probably spotted the iconic granite face of Moro Rock standing proud above the foothills at 6,725 ft. You’ve had a good look, and now it’s time to stand on it! In spring and summer, you'll see showy wildflower blooms at Sequoia, and the waterfalls in the park are at their peak in summer. If you've only got a day to see the park, the giant redwood trees are a must-see feature of the parks; be sure to stop by the General Sherman Tree, the largest tree on the planet, by taking a short walk from the main road while you're there. Search for NPS Sequoia & Kings Canyon and download the app from the Apple App or the Google Play store before you get arrive at the parks. Designed & Developed by Solo Pine. The new Majestic Mountain Loop is another way to experience the highlights of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, as well as Yosemite National Park. General Grant National Park, the forerunner of Kings Canyon, was the third, established in 1940. It's a very pretty drive, with optional stops to … However, this may not be the best hike for folks with a fear of heights or exposure. You don’t need to be an accomplished climber to get on top because the NPS has laid 350 steps to make it an easily accessible lookout. Sequoia Resort is a 377-acre vacation property with trails and paved paths that are great for walks, hikes, jogs, and biking. They love human food and can cause damage to your vehicles trying to get it. In Sequoia National Park, all visitor services at Wuksachi Lodge are closed through December 28, including the lodge, the restaurant, gift shop, and restrooms. However, the park is planning to install a new cell tower by 2020, so the signal available in the park may improve significantly in the near future. A visit to Sequoia National Park is the perfect opportunity to explore the rugged natural landscapes California has to offer. The parks offer a chance for visitors to explore expansive mountain peaks, sprawling woodlands, profound canyons, a vast array of wildlife, and the world’s largest trees. Sequoia National Park feeds into Sequoia National Forest to the south, and up beyond Kings Canyon National Park lies Yosemite National Park and Sierra National Forest. When she’s not writing, Emily can be found backpacking, road tripping to outdoor destinations, climbing, or rowing whitewater. This area is home to giant Sequoias, waterfalls, a rushing river, meadows of wildflowers, alpine lakes, deep canyons and black bears. Copyright 2019 - Eternal Arrival. Sequoia National Park and Kings Canyon sit in the heart of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Additionally, Crystal Cave, a marble cave filled with huge stalactites and stalagmites that offers guided tours, is only open during the summer, and this season is the best time to hike to the summit of Mount Whitney, the tallest mountain in the contiguous United States. Mineral King is a glacial valley seven and a half miles … With giant sky-scraping trees, and terrain that invites engagement with adventure, it's a natural wonderland where … If you're in the area, it's definitely worth it to hop over to Kings Canyon! Nature is at the forefront of things to do in Sequoia National Park, but there are also several manmade structures and attractions worth checking out during your trip. You will be accessing the park through the Ash Mountain Entrance Station at the foothills of the Sierra Nevadas: the perfect start to any road trip to Sequoia National Park! Bring plenty of water to start out the day if you’re traveling in summer. The easiest to use resource is the California Statewide Fire Map. Winter snow sometimes closes the road between the Giant Forest and Grant Village, and you may not be able to get into Sequoia National Park from Highway 180. Bears are among the many creatures that live in Sequoia National Park. Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks In summer, a free in-park shuttle runs through the Giant Forest and Lodgepole areas of Sequoia National Park, from Giant Forest Museum to Dorst Creek Campground. Mineral King. Once in the park, use the pullout at the Sequoia National Park sign and take the short trail down to the river for the first stop on your Sequoia National Park itinerary. Today we are starting off with a couple of sights in the Giant Forest before heading north on Generals Highway. Park in the large lot at the Hospital Rock Picnic Area to check out Hospital Rock right across the street. During the summer, you can drive down a steep, narrow, winding road near the Sequoia gate off CA 198 to explore Mineral King, a sub-alpine valley that's the only part of the park's backcountry accessible by automobile. Not sure where to get the best deal on your rental? Not only is Crystal Cave closed each winter, but from mid-November through mid-May, the road that takes you on a dramatic drive through Kings Canyon down to the Kings River is also closed. It’s amazing to think Generals Highway used to direct traffic right under it! In fall, you'll find colorful foliage along the river in Kings Canyon. Betsy has been writing about California for nearly more than two decades as TripSavvy's expert on the state. Before you go, find out how to stay well and comfortable by taking a look at these. Explore some of America's most beautiful scenery. The spectacular groves that the Giant Sequoias grow in are spaced throughout the park and are accessible by car and foot! Emily is a freelance travel and outdoor recreation writer from Big Sky, Montana. Sequoia trees can only grow between 4,000 and 8,000 ft elevation, so don’t be surprised to find that every inch of the park isn’t completely covered in these beasts. Forest fires are always a possibility from spring through fall, but they're especially likely in the summer. I’ve rented cars dozens of times through various search engines and have settled on Discover Cars as the best car rental search engine – it searches over 500 trusted rental companies to find the cheapest price for your rental! How to Spend a Weekend in Sequoia National Park Sequoia and Kings Canyon are called “hiker’s parks” and rightfully so. If you have a big RV or are towing a trailer, check the limits before your visit. The Sequoias are waiting and are surely glowing in the early-morning lighting. You’re not the only one. If you need chains and don't have them, you can find a list on the national park website of places nearby that rent chains. If you don't stop to pay the fee, you risk being ticketed by a park ranger while in the park. The trail hugs the Middle Fork of the Kaweah River before arriving at the beautiful 1,200 ft falls that cascade over the impressive granite walls. This is also a popular place to spot deer and bear. Back on Generals Highway, we’re headed over to the Lodgepole Area. Take a right onto Wolverton Road and follow the helpful signs to General Sherman. Fun and easy on the legs. The main trail walks by a meadow where you can see the contrast of the meadow with the large sequoias growing right on the edge of the meadow. This park … Walk over and check out Tunnel Rock. With Free Shuttle & Stay, visitors book a two-night stay in any of the 16 Visalia hotels and they receive two free passes for the Sequoia Shuttle, which includes entry into Sequoia National Park. If you’re able to make the short ¼ – mile hike up, you’ll be generously rewarded with 360-degree views of the surrounding mountain landscape. The road will switchback and is best taken at a slow speed. It’s tree-hugging heaven. If you’re interested in hiking a bit further, the Hospital Rock Trail continues down to the Kaweah River. When driving around Sequoia, expect to maintain an average speed of 25 miles per hour or less, which means it takes about an hour to an hour and a half to drive from Grant Village to Roads End in Kings Canyon. Along Generals Highway, you will pass multiple scenic turnouts. Remember, only take memories and photos of these beautiful groves. In Mineral King, visitors can explore a wandering subalpine valley brimming with pine, sequoia and fir. This scenic hiking loop is less than a mile and provides a wonderfully relaxing escape into nature. To get to Sequoia National Park from Kings Canyon, drive south past Grant Grove and follow the signs for Sequoia National Park. In winter, visitors may find the giant sequoias covered in snow like over-sized Christmas trees, but you'll miss some of the park's most spectacular scenery this season. There’s plenty of hiking trails to choose from and each of them gives something special to remember: from giant sequoias to waterfalls, quiet lakes and mountain top views. To find the best place for you, see the guide to finding hotels and campgrounds at Sequoia. This area has camping, hiking trails, river access, concessions, a visitor center, and even hot showers! Those big trees you heard so much about will begin to make an appearance as you continue on Generals Highway. This is a great area to spot deer and bear grazing in the meadow area. a cabin he built into a Sequoia tree that had fallen down! Soon after, there will be a parking area on the side of the road. Leave all Sequoia and Sugar Pine Cones where they have fallen. Even away from cell service, this interactive guide will help you make the most out of your trip. All Rights Reserved. 11 Useful Things to Know Before You Visit Denver, Colorado, 75 Perfect Camping Quotes & Captions for Instagram, Read my privacy policy and disclaimer here. For simplicity, this guide refers to them all as "Sequoia" in the descriptions below. Sequoia National Park, or “the land of giants” as it’s often referred, will make you feel like you’re wandering through a fairytale and leave you in complete awe! This is a sacred Native American site, so please be respectful. Mobile devices may not work everywhere. Path is paved, which makes it less dusty. This is a great place to get an up-close look at the Kaweah River. Ready for a visit to the biggest tree in the entire world? The Generals Highway runs nearly 50 miles from Sequoia National Park's Ash Mountain Entrance to Grant Grove in Kings Canyon National Park, passing through the Giant Forest, home of the world's largest sequoia trees. Explore Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks with the free, official National Park Service App. From hiking to fishing, and rock climbing to wildlife viewing, activity opportunities are endless in Sequoia & Kings Canyon. The dramatic landscapes of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks lie side by side in the Southern Sierra Nevada Mountains – a testament to the majesty and geographic diversity of the Western United States. Read my privacy policy and disclaimer here. Sequoia National Park, well-known in part for its namesake giant trees, is also home to some fantastic alpine lakes. Crystal Cave is a fun guided excursion to spelunk one of the park’s many natural caverns. Second, you need to prepare for a long drive not only to the park, but also inside it. The sunset in a Sequoia Grove is unlike any other. Time to rest up for another fun day in Sequoia National Park. Follow Generals Highway about 2 miles from the Sequoia National Park sign. However, if you're traveling from Sacramento and northern California, you'll want to exit U.S. Highway 99 at Fresno and take California Highway 180 east, which will take about an hour and a half to reach the Foothills entrance. The loop will end at the General Sherman Tree, where you can continue back to the parking area. Additionally, according to California state law, you should always have chains with you in the winter. The Top Destinations in Sequoia National Park Foothills. Only a short 3-minute walk from the Giant Forest Parking Area, this is a spectacular viewpoint to hang out at while drinking your morning coffee. Rise and shine! Rome2rio makes travelling from Napa Valley Wine Train to Sequoia National Park easy. The Lakes Trail visits four such lakes: Heather, Aster, Emerald and Pear, and had been on our radar for the last couple of years. Giant trees, even larger than the giant trees in Redwood State Parks. While not nearly as popular as Yosemite or Joshua Tree in terms of California's national parks, Sequoia and Kings Canyon are great destinations for travelers looking to escape into nature during their trip. We recommend staying near the Lodgepole Area for a convenient starting point. The moderate 4-mile out and back Tokopah Valley Trail to Tokopah Falls begins from the Lodgepole Parking Area. Take advantage of the opportunities to stop and enjoy the view! Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park is located on the Western Sierras and can be accessed by Highway 180 and 198 from Fresno. . Really nice walk along giant sequoia trees. We’re continuing on the Crescent Meadow Road toward Tunnel Log! Sequoia Shuttle allows guests to relax and enjoy the journey into the Giant Forest. Head back toward Generals Highway after your fun adventure through Crescent Meadow and park in the Giant Forest Parking Area. Compare prices for car rental from Los Angeles here. We know you can’t wait to explore even more of the Giant Forest. Along the way, you’ll pass many of the area’s other giants! This neat tunnel carved out of a fallen Sequoia makes for a great op of you and your road-tripping rig. The morning views from Beetle Rock are magnificent. Disappear off the map and into a world of outdoor possibilities at Sequoia National Park. You will feel like an ant next to this chunk and look kind of like one in your photos. Her adventurous spirit has led her to the high peaks of the Sierras and the largest wilderness areas in the lower 48. Fires can affect air quality and travel access to the mountains, so it’s a good idea to check for them before you go to Sequoia. Getting to Sequoia National Park The most scenic way to get to Sequoia (and the shortest route from Los Angeles) is to take California Highway 198 through Visalia and Three Rivers until you reach the Ash Mountain entrance, which is about an hour's drive from U.S. Highway 99. The moment you’ve been waiting for… Giant Sequoias! The tour lasts about 45 minutes and guides guests along a fascinating ½-mile loop. Midsummer temperatures can reach well above 100 degrees F! As a result, you can typically find hotel rooms near the park on most weekends, even in mid-summer. Call (559) 563-3341 for a recorded message about road conditions or visit the alerts page of the national park website. To stay safe whether you're camping or staying in a hotel. Follow Generals Highway about 2 miles from the Sequoia National Park sign. Some tips for visiting Sequoia National Park:-Sequoia National Park is often lumped in with nearby Kings Canyon. Just sitting still on Beetle rock, away from others (or on a big log on the hill behind it) you'll start to see all kinds of things (including beetles, but also lizards, ground squirrels, tree squirrels, chimpmunks, … Walk over and check out Tunnel Rock. This 1.7-mile loop begins at the parking area at the very end of the Crescent Meadow Road, and it leads hikers right through a beautiful Sequoia Grove. The two are contiguous, and the National Parks Service manages them as one unit. Soon after, there will be a parking area on the side of the road. Rocks are kind of a theme on this leg of the trip! Although there are places inside to park to stop and get a bit to eat, you … Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks are administered jointly along with Sequoia National Forest, which is located south of the parks, and Giant Sequoia National Monument, which includes two areas west of them. From General Sherman, follow signs for the Congress Trail. However, gasoline costs significantly more there than it would if you filled up in Fresno or Three Rivers on your way to the park. You were looking for the standing Sequoia that you can drive underneath? When you get up close to this tree, it’s easy to believe it’s the world’s biggest! Sequoia was America’s second national park designated in 1890. The trailhead is located near the parking area. Single vehicles must be 40 feet long or less while a vehicle and towed unit combined must be less than 50 feet long. Soak in the scenery on your hike while reminiscing on all the memories you’ve made following this Sequoia National Park itinerary. The tree you’re thinking of once stood in Yosemite National Park, but fell over in 1969! With frequent service to visitor centers, trailheads, and more, shuttles are a quick and easy way to discover the sequoias while reducing air pollution. find a list on the national park website of places nearby that rent chains, visit the alerts page of the national park website, guide to finding hotels and campgrounds at Sequoia. In the National Forest, they can go on trails with you but must be on a leash less than 6 feet long. Being located near Sequoia National Park and Kings Canyon, Sequoia Resort gives you the perfect opportunity to explore these national treasures while having a clean, safe base camp ~ with warm showers! You will pass the visitor center, which is a great place to stop to buy a hiking map and get current park information. In the national parks, pets are allowed only in campgrounds, picnic areas, and other developed areas. Now you will be driving on Generals Highway, the scenic road that connects the two parks together. Fortunately, the park is rarely overcrowded and gets about one-third of the visitors that Yosemite welcomes every summer. Restaurants Inside the Park. Our first stop is always to the visitor center to pick up the Junior … After your hike, grab a treat at the Lodgepole Market and Grill before heading off to your next site. Although Congress created these two parks in the southern Sierra Nevada at different times, Sequoia and Kings Canyon share miles of boundary. The Little Baldy Trail is a popular 3.5-mile out and back hike that will take about 2 hours to complete. How to See the Tallest Trees on Earth: California's Redwoods, What You Need to Know About Lodging at Sequoia and Kings Canyon, California's Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Park - An Overview, Top Things to Do in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, Virtual Tour of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, Pack Up the Tent, Hook Up the Trailer: Places to Camp in Sequoia National Park, The Top 11 Things to Do in Fresno, California, Visit These National Parks Near Los Angeles, Fall in California: Weather and Event Guide, A Day Away: Fab Family Vacations Within 6 Hours of San Francisco, How to Get From San Francisco to Yosemite National Park, Visiting California in the Winter: What to Expect, September in California: Weather and Event Guide, RV Destination Guide: Sequoia National Park, Why Wuksachi Lodge Is the Best Place to Stay in Sequoia National Park. And travelers are advised to bring food from outside the parks is rarely overcrowded and gets about one-third of Giant. 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