"Deadman Canyon, Sequoia-Kings Canyon Wilderness, 8/4/2011" by U.S. National Park Service , public domain
Sequoia & Kings Canyon Guide
Fall Visitor Guide to Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks (NP) in California. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).
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Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks National Park Service U.S. U .S. Department of the Interior Trip Planner Fall 2022 © Nicholas Ampersee Information in this newspaper can change at any time as we work to safely increase access to these parks. Giant Sequoias COVID-19 Safety Giant sequoias are icons of resilience. They are well-adapted to survive thousands of years in a landscape visited by fre, drought, and beetle attacks, but human-caused climate change and past management practices that have resulted in overly dense forests have put trees at risk from all three. Masks may be required in federal buildings or on park shuttles. Please check signage outside visitor centers and other federal buildings and at shuttle stops. These requirements are based on CDC's COVID-19 Community Level tool. When nearby counties are at low-medium risk, masks are optional in federal buildings. Wildfre is a complex process that depends on many factors, including previous fre patterns, forest management practices, and temperature and moisture. Rising temperatures, earlier snowmelt, dense fuel loads, and drier conditions lead to higher-severity fre and fre seasons that are months longer and more extreme than even 20 years ago. The 2020 Castle Fire and 2021 KNP Complex Fire burned so intensely that an estimated 19% of all large sequoias were killed. Road Construction This fall, road construction projects to improve park roads and utilities may be underway during your visit. Some trees that survived fres have died a few years later. Damage related to severe fres may reduce water fow to the tree’s crown. Meanwhile, drought conditions and hotter temperatures over most of the past decade mean there is less water for trees. In those conditions, burrowing action by native cedar bark beetles could turn from harmless to fatal for a weakened tree. Park managers fear that despite sequoias’ incredible toughness, without action, more of the magnifcent giants may die in alarming numbers. But perhaps the most powerful defenders of sequoias are those who visit the trees, learn, teach others, and take steps to address climate change so that today’s sequoias stand for hundreds or thousands of years more, for future visitors to stand beneath in awe. The 2021 KNP Complex Fire killed thousands of mature sequoia trees in the Redwood Mountain Grove. © Daniel Jeffcoach Throughout Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks: Short stretches of the Generals Highway, some campground roads, and parking lots are being sealed and resurfaced. If you encounter one of these areas, plan on a 30-minute delay. Road work is not scheduled on weekends or holidays. Please stop at your nearest visitor center to learn where construction is happening during your visit. Road work in Sequoia is expected through October. General Information ........... 2 Burned Area Safety ................5 Giant Forest & Lodgepole ......7 National Forest Lands ...............9 Safety ................................... 3 Wildlife Safety ........................5 Grant Grove & Cedar Grove ...8 Información en español .....10-11 Camping & Programs .......... 4 Foothills & Mineral King ........6 Wilderness .............................9 Getting Around ....................... 12 2 General Information Contacts Frequently Asked Questions Accessibility Cell Service Pets Cell service is extremely limited here, and is mainly available for some networks near entrance stations. Pets are not permitted on any trails in Sequoia and Kings Canyon. Pets must be kept on a leash at all times, or appropriately crated or caged. Pets cannot be left tied and unattended at any time. The leash must be no longer than 6 feet (1.8 meters) long. We are committed to a continuing effort to improve the accessibility of our trails and facilities so they can be enjoyed by all. If you have questions or suggestions about accessibility, please email us at SEKI_Interpretation@nps.gov or call us at 559-565-3341. Drones Accessibility Guide EMERGENCY — DIAL 911 No coins are needed in pay phones for 911 calls. Sequoia & Kings Canyon (NPS) (559) 565-3341 (24 hour): Recorded information is available for road conditions, weather, current fres, and more. GPS GPS programs often misdirect travelers in this area. Use maps and signs, or ask for directions. Web & Social Media Unmanned aircraft are not allowed in these parks. This includes drones and other remotely piloted vehicles. Marijuana Possession or use of marijuana and other controlled substances inside the national parks is prohibited. While California law provides for limited possession and use of marijuana, it remains an illegal drug under federal law, which is enforced within the parks. www.nps.gov/seki Fire Restrictions @sequoiakingsnps Fire restrictions are in effect to reduce the chance of accidental, human-caused fre. Prohibited locations for wood or charcoal fres will be posted. These include Potwisha, South Fork, and Buckeye Flat campgrounds and Hospital Rock and Foothills picnic areas. @sequoiakingsnps @sequoiakingsnps Sequoia National Forest/ Monument (USFS) (559) 338-2251, fs.usda.gov/sequoia Yosemite National Park (NPS) (209) 372-0200, nps.gov/yose California Road Conditions (CalTrans) (800) 427-7623, dot.ca.gov Free Public WiFi Locations Restrictions may increase throughout the year as fre danger increases. Check for updates on park bulletin boards, at visitor centers, or by visiting go.nps.gov/sekifrerestrictions. Firearms in these National Parks People who can legally possess frearms under federal, California, and local laws may possess frearms here. You are responsible for understanding and complying with all applicable California, local, and federal frearms laws. Discharge of frearms in the parks is prohibited. Free Mobile App Campground Reservations Install the NPS app for trip-planning information. Search for National Park Service in the iTunes or Google Play stores, and then choose Sequoia and Kings Canyon. Be sure to download content for use offine during your visit, as WiFi is limited in the parks. Visit Recreation.gov or call (877) 444-6777 (TDD: 877-833-6777). Translations Foothills Visitor Center (Sequoia National Park), Kings Canyon Visitor Center (Grant Grove). Delaware North (Authorized Concessioner) Visit www.visitsequoia.com or call (866) 807-3598 for lodging reservations. Cedar Grove Pack Station Welcome - You may borrow a Braille copy of the park map & guide at visitor centers. Bienvenidos - Hay un folleto en español disponible en los centros de visitante. (horseback riding concessioner) Bienvenue - Une guide offcielle est disponible dans les centres d’information. Grant Grove: (559) 335-9292 https://grantgrovestables.com/ Wilkommen - Eine Landkarte ist auch in deutscher sprache im Besucher-zentrum erhaltlich. Cedar Grove: (559) 802-7626 cedargrovepackstation.com Benvenuti - La traduzione in lingua Italiana della mappa e’ disponibile in tutti i centri di informazioni. Ask at any visitor center for a printed accessibility guide. This new publication offers details about accessible park features by area and for different user groups. The information in the guide is also available online at go.nps.gov/SEKI-accessibility. Visitor Centers All visitor centers and museums have paved, fat paths leading from parking areas to information desks, exhibits, bookstores, water bottle flling stations, and restrooms. Cedar Grove Visitor Center is small, and may be diffcult for people in wheelchairs to navigate. Mineral King Ranger Station has steps leading to the entrance and may not be accessible to people with mobility impairments. Wheelchairs may be borrowed at no cost at Kings Canyon and Cedar Grove visitor centers, or at Giant Forest Museum. They can be used anywhere in the parks but must be returned by the end of the day, before each visitor center closes. Be prepared to provide your address and phone number. Open captioning is available for flms. Assistive listening and audio description are also available at Kings Canyon Visitor Center when the theater is open. Ask for a receiver at the information desk. Wheelchair-Accessible Trails Some trails are not plowed in spring and may not be accessible to wheelchair users. General Sherman Tree Trail (Giant Forest): This short trail leads a few hundred feet from an accessible parking area to the General Sherman Tree, the largest tree on earth. Big Trees Trail (Giant Forest): This level trail is a 0.75-mile (1.2 km) loop. It circles a meadow surrounded by giant sequoias. Panoramic Point Trail (Grant Grove): This paved trail leads to views that reach deep into park wilderness. RVs are not permitted on this road. Roaring River Falls (Cedar Grove): This area closes on November 14 for the season. A 528-foot (160 m), shady walk features a powerful waterfall rushing through a granite chute. Park 3 miles (4.8 km) east of the Village road. Paved, relatively accessible. Be Safe You Are Responsible for Your Safety 3 Explore Safely Beautiful, yet remote and rugged, these parks present hazards. Mountain weather changes quickly, trees fall without warning, and wild animals pose dangers. People cause other hazards by driving poorly, leaving campfres burning, and making bad decisions. Cell phones can’t be relied on and GPS directions may send you in the wrong direction. Every day, we help visitors who have emergencies. • Avoid traveling alone. Tell someone your plans and expected return time. • Take a map, water, fashlight, and extra layers of clothes. Do not rely on your phone's map or fashlight. Please help us by being prepared—review these safety warnings. Your safety is in your own hands! • Be alert for potential hazards above, around, and on the ground. River Safety While swimming in the parks' lakes and rivers can be tempting, drowning is the primary cause of death here. Rivers present great danger due to their swift currents and slippery rocks. In river-related deaths, many people did not intend to swim, but fell in. Currents are strong even during low water. Drop-offs and undertows are ever-present. Be vigilant. Once in a river, getting out can be nearly impossible. Cold water rapidly saps your strength and hypothermia can set in quickly even if it is warm outside. • Do not swim in areas with strong currents, or steep drop-offs. • Do not swim near submerged trees or vegetation. They can trap you underwater. • DO NOT leave children unattended. • Swimming and alcohol or drugs do not mix. Swim sober. • Wear sturdy shoes. Sharp objects in the water can cut bare feet. • During storms, get out of the water and exit beach areas. • NEVER SWIM ALONE. Tree Hazards Branches and trees may fall, whether dead or alive, and when there is no wind. Keep eyes and ears open. Run if you hear cracks or snapping from roots, trunks, or branches (sometimes there is no sound). Don't linger under dead, cracked, broken, or hanging branches. Avoid spending any time under trees that are rotten at the base or have cracked bark that is peeling off the trunk. West Nile Virus & Tick Bites Air Quality Poor air quality often affects the parks, especially during the summer. In summer months, ozone concentrations often exceed federal health standards. Ozone can have negative health effects, particularly for sensitive groups such as children, older people, and those with heart or lung disease. For air quality forecasts, visit the park website or follow @SequoiaKingsAir on Twitter. Plague & Hantavirus West Nile virus is passed by bites from infected mosquitos. Human illness is not common but take steps to avoid mosquito bites. Ticks are common in grassy, brushy lowelevation areas. They can carry diseases that harm humans. Check yourself for these insects after walks; their bite is painless. Remove them carefully with tweezers and seek a doctor’s advice. Plague and hantavirus are associated with wildlife here, but cases of human infection are rare. Rodents and their feas may carry plague, which may infect humans when bitten. Hantavirus is an airborne virus that comes from infected deer mice. Typically people contract hantavirus after they clean areas or are in enclosed spaces with deer mice feces. Rattlesnakes Keep Pets Safe Rattlesnakes are common in the Sequoia foothills and in the Kings Canyon at low elevations. Watch where you put your hands and feet! Do not harass or kill them; this is when most bites occur. Bites are rarely lethal, but tissue damage can be severe. If bitten, don’t panic and call 911. To keep pets and wildlife safe, animals must be on a leash at all times. Pets are vulnerable to tick and snake bites. Bears and deer have also been known to charge or attack dogs. Pick up all pet waste and dispose of properly. Pets are not allowed on any park trails. Do not leave pets unattended or in vehicles where they can easily overheat. Poison Oak This common shrub grows up to 5,000 feet (1,524 m) in elevation, and can cause an itchy rash if you touch it. Poison oak has leaves in groups of three. Leaves are red and berries whitish in fall. The plant is bare in winter, and has shiny green leaves in spring. If you touch any part of it, wash skin and clothes with soap and warm water right away. Don't Lose Your Brakes If you keep a foot on the brake for too long, brakes may fail. Instead, always downshift when going downhill. In automatic vehicles, put the gearshift on 1, 2, or L. The engine gets louder, but your brakes won't overheat. 4 Camping Campgrounds Are Open By Reservation Only Reservations will be required for ALL park campgrounds, except South Fork. No frst-come, frstserved sites are available. As seasonal campgrounds close in fall, expect camping availability to be limited. Make reservations at Recreation.gov or call (877) 4446777; TDD: (877) 833-6777; or customer service (888) 448-1474. Reservations can be made up to one month in advance. Same-day reservations may be possible if sites are available. Check-in & Checkout, Quiet Hours Check-in and check-out are at noon. If you have not checked in by noon on the second day of your reservation, your site may be considered unoccupied and opened to new campers. Sequoia National Forest (US Forest Service) Campgrounds (Near Grant Grove) Hume Lake Area Campgrounds Quiet hours are 10 pm–6 am (no generators). Noise should be audible in your site only. Reservation only: Princess, Hume Lake, Ten-mile, Logger Flat Group, and Aspen Hollow Group First-come, frst-served: Landslide and Convict Flat Dump Stations Big Meadows & Stony Creek Area Campgrounds RV dump stations are available at Potwisha and Lodgepole campgrounds, or for a fee at Princess Campground in Sequoia National Forest. Stony Creek, Upper Stony Creek, Horse Camp, Buck Rock, Fire Group, Cove Group, and Big Meadow Conserve Water Roadside Camping Dispersed Camping Please conserve water when camping. Water levels are critically low this year. If water runs out, campgrounds may need to close early. Roadside camping is not permitted in the park. Camp only in designated sites in campgrounds. • Limit water use • Turn off faucets when not in use • Report any water leaks to park staff • While potable water is provided, you can help by bringing your own drinking water Fire restrictions are in effect at some campgrounds. These include but are not limited to Potwisha, South Fork, and Buckeye Flat campgrounds and Hospital Rock and Foothills picnic areas. More campgrounds and picnic areas may be added if fre danger increases. Check for signs at your campground to see if fres are prohibited. Campfres must be out cold before you leave. If it's too hot to touch, it's too hot to leave. Self-contained camping, with no water, restrooms, trash cans, or other amenities is permitted in the national forest (not in the national parks). Check with Sequoia National Forest for time and group size limits. Please follow Leave No Trace principles. Campsite Amenities Each campsite has a table and food storage box. Most sites accommodate up to six people and one or two vehicles. There are no RV hookups in the parks. RV and Trailer Length Limits If you're driving an RV or trailer, check length limits on park roads and at campsites. Fire Restrictions and Safety Free fre permits available at: www.readyforwildfre.org/permits. If fre danger is high, open fres may not be allowed outside campgrounds. Permits are also available at Hume Lake Ranger District offce. Propane and Fuel Canisters Please recycle fuel canisters at home. Do not put them in park trash cans or leave them in the campground. Showers and Laundry Showers and laundry facilities are not available in the parks in 2022. Lake Kaweah (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers) Near Three Rivers, California Horse Creek Campground Activities Ranger Walks & Talks Free programs may be offered in the Foothills, Giant Forest, Grant Grove, Cedar Grove, and other locations. Check bulletin boards for schedules of ranger-led activities or ask a ranger at a visitor center. Junior Ranger Program Pick up a free booklet at any visitor center, complete the activities, and earn your badge! Interested in Volunteering? To learn more about volunteering in the parks, please contact the Volunteer Offce at (559) 565-4232 or email@example.com. Volunteers are needed for invasive plant control, special events, routine clerical and maintenance tasks, and much more! Individuals and groups welcome. Teachers & Parents, Take Note! Invite a ranger to your class, visit the parks with your school group, or download lesson plans. We also have activities for students and families that can be used before and after your visit, creating a more immersive experience. All education programs are standardsbased and free! Visit nps.gov/seki/learn/education. Ask about the Every Kid Outdoors free entrance pass for fourth graders and their families! Sequoia Parks Conservancy Sequoia Parks Conservancy, the offcial nonproft partner to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, welcomes you! We work hand-in-hand with the National Park Service to provide tours and retail services, fund critical projects, and protect and preserve park treasures for future generations. We help you make a deeper connection to the parks, so visit us online to learn more about everything we do. We’ve saved a place for you—come join us! Crystal Cave Due to impacts from the KNP Complex Fire, Crystal Cave will be closed for the 2022 season. We look forward to welcoming you back in 2023! Sequoia Parks Conservancy Adventures We get it—exploring the national parks can be overwhelming. What's open? Where do you go? What can you do? We're here to help you have a fun and memorable journey in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. We'll connect you to the biggest trees, the darkest skies, and the most epic trails. Visit: sequoiaparksconservancy.org/adventures @SequoiaParksConservancy @SeqParksCon Shop our online store! Keep Bears Wild and Safe Safety in Burned Areas Watch for falling trees. Branches and trees may fall, whether dead or alive, even when there is no wind. Keep eyes and ears open. Listen for cracks or snapping from roots, trunks, or branches. Don't linger under dead, cracked, broken, or hanging branches. Avoid spending any time under burned trees. Bears will grab unattended food and break into cars where food is visible. Some bears have become bold and aggressive because they have obtained human foods. Too often, these bears must be killed as they become dangerous. Food storage is key to keeping humans safe and bears alive. In Wilderness Hanging food often fails. Store all food in a bear-resistant storage container. These containers weigh less than 3 pounds (1.3 kg), hold up to 5 days of food, and ft in a backpack. Rent bear-resistant storage containers at some park visitor centers. A list of approved containers can be found on our website. Metal boxes are located in a few wilderness locations. Don't enter closed areas. There are identifed risks in these areas, including burned bridges, hazard trees, and sections of trail that are unstable due to erosion. Many of these hazards may be hard to spot. Drive carefully. Rocks, debris, and even downed trees may be present on roads at any time. Be alert and drive slowly, especially during rainy or windy weather. Follow tire chain requirements when they are in place. Watch out for animals. Stay on trails. Turn back if dangers are present. Though it may be tempting to wander, off-trail areas have hazards such as rolling rocks, holes, and unstable soils. Conditions in burned areas can change quickly. Turn around if you have diffculty following the trail, or encounter a problem that makes it unsafe to continue. Burned stumpholes or bridges may be common on some trails. Report dangerous conditions to park staff. Be especially careful if it's rainy or windy. Whether you plan an auto tour, a walk around the sequoias, a wilderness trip, or camping, storms and wind make many burned area hazards even more dangerous. Consider waiting until the weather is better before you travel. If you encounter dangerous conditions, turn back. Conditions in burned areas can change quickly. Turn around if you see a problem and you're not sure if it's safe to continue. Report dangerous conditions to park staff. Check at trailheads for information about potential hazards or closures. 5 Everyone Campgrounds Store food day and night in the metal food storage boxes provided (avoid using coolers that won’t ft; most boxes are 47" long x 33" deep x 28" high). Store ALL food, coolers, related items, and anything with an odor. Even non-food items must be stored 24 hours a day when not in use. This includes unopened cans and bottles. Make sure food storage boxes are completely latched. Food not properly stored will be impounded. Keep a clean campsite. Deposit garbage immediately in trash cans or dumpsters. Do not leave garbage unattended! Take child safety seats out of cars—the smells they absorb may attract bears. Lodges Remove all food and child safety seats from your vehicle. Don’t let bears approach you, your food, picnic area, or campsite. Wave your arms, make loud noises, and throw small rocks toward them (avoid hitting the face or head). Keep a safe distance, but be persistent. Abandoning your food teaches bears that foods come from humans; the bear may hurt a person in the future to get food. If a bear does get your food, NEVER try to get it back. Touring and Picnicking Food items MUST be stored in food storage boxes when provided. If no food storage box is available, food items must be inside your car trunk. If your vehicle doesn't have a trunk, place food items low in the vehicle, out of sight, and keep windows closed. While picnicking, never move away from coolers and tables when food is out. Stay within arm's length of food. Bears can smell anything with a scent—such as hand sanitizer, cosmetics, toiletries, trash, and cleaning supplies—and will mistake these items for food. Store anything with an odor. Wildlife Viewing & Safety Keep Wildlife Safe Mountain Lions and Bobcats Do not feed or touch ANY wild animals. All animals in Rarely seen, bobcats are larger than house cats and have bobbed tails. Mountain lions (cougars) are much larger and have long tails. Cats usually run when seen. If you see a mountain lion that doesn’t run: the parks are wild. View animals at safe distances (the length of two city buses) or through binoculars. Never disrupt, approach, or disturb animals from behaving normally. • • • • • • Do not run; running may trigger pursuit. Pick up children. Try to appear as large as possible—don’t crouch down. Hold your ground or back away slowly while facing the mountain lion. If the mountain lion acts aggressively, wave your hands, shout, and throw stones or sticks at it. If attacked, fght back! Report any sightings. 6 Foothills Explore the golden foothills, home to more species of plants and animals than the rest of these parks combined. Chaparral, oak woodlands, and river canyons offer warm days, waterfalls, and clear starry skies. Services and Facilities Marble Falls Paradise Creek Foothills Visitor Center & Sequoia Parks Conservancy (SPC) Park Store Visitor center staff are available most days for information and trip planning. Exhibit areas may be open and free WiFi is available, no password required. The SPC Park Store sells maps, books, clothing, and other items and rents bear canisters when open. Wilderness Permits Local permits for overnight travel are available 8 am–4 pm, at the Wilderness Offce. Beginning September 18, self-registration permits are available outside the Wilderness Offce. Follow the unpaved path to the right of the visitor center building. Go to the Fire Management and Wilderness Offce across the parking lot. Tunnel Rock Snap a picture at this iconic pullout off the Generals Highway. Walk on the old park road under this rock and pose for a photo. Use caution in this high-traffc area as you are crossing the road. Also note, poison oak is common here. Hospital Rock Picnic Area See rock paintings and explore exhibits about the California Native Americans who once lived here and still visit and live nearby. A short trail built by the Civilian Conservation Corps leads to a waterfall. Be careful; drownings have occurred here. Also, do not leave food in your vehicle here; use the metal foodstorage boxes to keep your food from bears. Marble Falls Trail For a walk that offers short or longer options, park across the highway from Potwisha Campground (not in the campground). Near site #14, follow the dirt road along canals. Climb 3.7 miles (6 km) to reach the waterfall. High temperatures and little shade or water can make this trail dangerous. Paradise Creek Trail For a creekside walk, park at Hospital Rock Picnic Area and walk 0.6 miles (0.9 km) to Buckeye Flat Campground. Take the path across from site #28 and cross a footbridge over the river. Follow Paradise Creek (not the river) for 2 miles (3.2 km) until the trail grows faint. Mineral King Climb the parks' steepest, highest winding road to its peak elevation of 7,800 feet (2,377 m). Enjoy this remote, rugged place, or follow a trail into a vast wilderness. Mineral King Road closes for the season on October 26. Services and Facilities Mineral King Ranger Station Open 7:30 am–4 pm until September 18. Get trail and local information here. Pay phones are nearby at Cold Springs Campground and the Sawtooth Trailhead parking area. Wilderness Permits Permits for overnight travel are issued at the ranger station, 7:30 am–4 pm; self-registration begins September 18. Silver City Mountain Resort (private) Cabins, gifts, showers, store, restaurant with a bakery and WiFi. No gas. Until October 26, open 8 am–7 pm Monday–Thursday and 8 am–8 pm Friday through Sunday. Call (559) 561-3223. Cold Springs Nature Trail Stroll through meadows and aspen groves on this slightly sloped, 1-mile (1.6 km) out-and-back trail. Start at Cold Springs Campground. Eagle Lake Climb the west side of the Mineral King Valley to a glacially carved tarn. This steep trail is 3.6 miles Mineral King Valley (5.7 km) one way, and begins at the end of Mineral King Road. After 2 miles (3.2 km), the trail splits. Turn left for Eagle Lake, or take the right-hand trail another 1.6 miles (2.5 km) for Mosquito Lake. Paradise Ridge Hike through sequoias to a ridge with views of the Great Western Divide. Park in the lot east of Atwell Mill Campground and walk past the campground to the trailhead. Climb 3.7 miles (5.9 km) to the peak of the ridge, or continue into wilderness. Atwell-Hockett to Deer Creek Walk through sequoias and an old sawmill to a waterfall. Park in the lot east of Atwell Mill Campground and walk toward the campground to the trailhead. This trail leads far into wilderness. Turn back in 1.5 miles (2.4 km) at Deer Creek. Monarch Lakes Upper and Lower Monarch Lakes lie at the foot of Sawtooth Peak, at the end of a 4.2 mile (one-way) hike. Since the trail follows a west-facing slope, it is best to get an early start. The trail passes through meadows, red fr forest, and the avalanche-scoured Chihuahua Bowl. Protect Your Car from Marmots! Marmots in this area sometimes chew through vehicle wires and fuel lines. Drive over your tarp and then wrap it around your vehicle, covering wheel wells. Extra tarps may be available at the ranger station. Giant Forest & Lodgepole 7 Welcome to the big trees. Enjoy the world's biggest unlogged sequoia grove, home of the world's largest tree. Discover serene meadows, rocky streams, and towering forests. Shuttles travel throughout the Giant Forest and Lodgepole area during holidays. General Sherman Tree Beetle Rock Two trails lead to the world’s largest tree: A short walk along a wheelchair-accessible trail from the Giant Forest Museum parking area. Take in spectacular views with ample space. • • Main Trail - Park at Main Sherman Tree Parking. This 0.5-mile (0.8-km) trail down to the tree has stairs and the walk back is uphill. If someone in your group can't manage the uphill hike, consider hiking the accessible trail (see below), park at Lodgepole or Wolverton, and ride the shuttle. When snow begins to accumulate, this trail usually closes. Wheelchair-accessible trail from the highway A disability placard is required to park here. When snow begins to accumulate, this parking area is open to all visitors. Check signage at the parking area. Congress Trail Park at Wolverton or Lodgepole shuttle parking. From the Sherman Tree, continue along this fairly level 2-mile (3.2-km) loop through the heart of the Giant Forest sequoia grove. Moro Rock/Crescent Meadow Road This 3-mile (4.8-km), dead-end road begins at Giant Forest Museum. Expect congestion and limited parking; this road is closed to vehicles on weekends and holidays. When the road is closed, ride the shuttle or hike to access Moro Rock and other features. If you have a disability placard or wilderness permit, you can be granted access—inquire at Giant Forest Museum. • • Colonel Young Tree - Park at the Auto Log and walk to a sequoia named for a notable Buffalo Soldier. Charles Young was the park's frst Black superintendent, and was recently promoted (posthumously) to Brigadier General. Crescent Meadow - Sequoias surround this fragile wetland. Several trails start here, including the 1-mile (1.6-km) route to Tharp’s Log. Big Trees Trail This level loop has trailside exhibits about sequoias. Start at Giant Forest Museum for a 1-mile (1.6-km) round-trip walk. If you have a disability placard, park at the trailhead for a 0.75-mile (1-km) loop. Tokopah Falls Park at Lodgepole Campground parking lot, just past the campground kiosk. The 1.7-mile (2.7-km) trail starts in Lodgepole Campground and ends at a viewpoint near the cascades of Tokopah Falls. Return the same way for a 3.4-mile (5.5 km) round-trip hike. Be careful around the water; cold, swift currents are diffcult to escape. Beetle Rock Little Baldy This 3.4-mile (5.5-km) out-and-back trail has 700 feet (200 m) of elevation gain and offers one of the best views in the park. The trailhead is 1.5 miles (2.4 km) south of Dorst Campground. Parking is limited, so get here early or later in the day. Parking Areas See shuttle routes on page 12 of the newspaper. Shuttles operate on some holiday weekends. Park at these areas to tour Sequoia by shuttle. Wuksachi Lodge & Restaurant To Grant Grove (1 hour) Road to Grant closes when impassable due to snow. Park at Giant Forest Museum where this level, 1.4-mile (2 km) round-trip trail begins. It ends on top of a granite dome with sweeping views of the foothills. Lodgepole Campground, Lodgepole Market Wolverton Main Sherman Tree Parking Sherman Tree Trail Accessible Parking Bear Hill Trail Park at Giant Forest Museum and walk toward the