Calaveras Big Trees State Park

Trip Start Jul 10, 2013
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Trip End Jan 06, 2014


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Flag of United States  , California
Thursday, October 3, 2013

This morning we got up, had breakfast and headed out. We drove through Farmington, bypassed Angels Camp, through Arnold to Calaveras Big Trees State Park. We met a volunteer who was very informative and gave us a few suggestions. We decided to head to the South grove to do the walk and find the largest Giant Sequoia that they have The Agassiz Tree, one of the " Top Ten" Sierra redwoods in size. We drove the 8 miles further into the park and parked. We had a 1.6km walk to reach the beginning of the trail. It crossed Beaver Creek and climbs through tall sugar and ponderosa pines before it continues upstream alongside Big Trees Creek. There were so many "tall trees" that we were at first guessing as to which ones were the giant sequoias but none of them were!! After the trail junction we were then actually walking among the Sierra redwoods. We walked past a large hollow sequoiad lying across the creek, you could even walk in it as it was so large. As we continued on our walk we came past one aptly named Chimney Tree as it's insides were long ago severely burnt by fire, forming a “chimney” in a still-living tree. Pretty fascinating to see. There was also a tree called The Palace hotel, it had reminded viewers of the central courtyard carriage entrance and then we finally got to The Agassiz. Approx dimensions are: 25 feet in diameter at 6 feet above the ground, and 250 feet tall. Weight can reach 6000 tons. We had lunch sitting on a fallen tree next to it, you cannot fathom the true size. After refueling and recharging the batteries we headed back down and completed the 8km loop to the car. We drove back to the North grove, where the kids and Ginny remained in the car while Rich and I did the 2.7 km loop around the grove. Seeing the the Big Stump, the “Mother and Father of the Forest” and the Pioneer Cabin Tree which at one time was a drive through tree. Then back to the car and headed home. We were all pretty tired so got some pizza for dinner. Then got the kids off to bed and Rich and I sat up catching up on our correspondence.
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