The trees were even bigger than I could have ever imagined. The duder and I spent 4 days hiking all over the park. We saw the world's largest tree (by volume!), bears, fat squirrels, other tiny friends,and hiked to the highest point in the park. I can't wait to go back. That place was magical.
Advice for visiting the park + nifty spots to visit:
- Plan extra time for getting around the park! It's a huge park and driving up the narrow, windy roads was pretty intense.
- 4 wheel drive is your friend! Especially if you camp at Atwell or Cold Springs. We camped at Atwell and it's a 20 mile drive up the side of two mountains on a partially paved road. I'm still surprised my little car made it (such a trooper!)
- Bring mosquito repellent. I forgot that mosquitos existed because I live in the desert and we don't have any here. Now I'm covered in 18+ bites.
- Pack light for day hikes! I had my bag full of clothes, and left that at the tent the entire time. Just bring a Camelbak or a Nalgene bottle for a day hike and you should be okay.
- Bring quarters! I caved after the third day and needed a shower. We went to Lodgepole and their quarter machines were busted. It's $3/person for a 10 minute shower, so be sure to bring spare change if you want to get clean!
I cannot recommend Crescent Meadow enough. That spot was magical, and if you follow me on Instagram, that was where the bird video was from. Just be quiet while you're hiking and you'll here 20+ different species of birds. If you take the bus from the Giant Forest Museum, you'll pass Tunnel Log on your way up to Crescent Meadow. I also suggest this stop, even though thr duder and I didn't go. Also be sure to stop by Tharp's Log and Huckleberry Meadows on this trail!
From Crescent Meadow, you have the option to get back on the bus and go to Moro Rock or to hike a 1.5 mile trail. Take the trail! The hike is gorgeous and well worth it! We found some Indian Mortars on the way too!
And, of course, at the end of that trail is Moro Rock. The highest point within the park. Go to the top! The stairs are pretty steep, but look at this view!
Go see Crystal Cave! It's $15/person and absolutely worth it. If you're sensitive to the cold, bring a pullover. It felt great in there (approximately 50 degrees) compared to the 85 it was outside!
|This one isn't my picture. NO flash photography is allowed in the cave.|
And of course, go see General Sherman!