Sequoia National Park has a lot to offer and has a lot of trails! I would say I think there are more miles of backpacking trails than hiking trails at this park. But like all National Parks, there are things for everyone to do. Short hikes, longer hikes and backpacking trails. And did I mention wildlife! If your a wildlife lover, this is your park. I have seen more wildlife here in one day than in pretty much any other park, besides Denali National Park and Yellowstone. If it were up to me, I feel like there are three segments to the park.
The Southern end, more of a desert feel, tall mountains but short trees and shrubs. Then you get to the middle section.
Your higher up so its colder and you have the super tall and big trees. And last but not least the upper. This is where you get to some peaks, the tallest waterfall in the park, and you are up at an even higher point in elevation.
All three of these segments offering something different in terms of sightseeing.
There are shuttles that are offered throughout the park. From the visitor center and even before, I believe at three rivers (the small town right outside the park) all the way up to the Northern Part of the Park. The buses run every 20 minutes and will bring you to all the bus stops. I counted 11 stops throughout the park, but there might be more.
In one day, I seen six bears, lizards, a small marmot-like animal, birds, butterfly’s, everything! And in June, the flowers are amazing! There are so many flowers alongside the trail and in all different colors! The smells were also intense.
The cedar, evergreens and flowers all coming together made a very fresh smell, and that is what I enjoyed most about the park. Is not only the sights, but the smells, wildlife and flowers!
Largest living tree in the world (General Sherman)! This tree weighs approximately 2.7 million pounds and is approximately 2,100 years old. This hike takes about an hour, if you are hiking to the bottom of the tree and taking the loop back. There are other trails around this area too if you enjoy seeing the big trees. If you want a map with all the best day-hikes, you can get the map here.
This hike is short but steep and is very high! If you don’t like heights, this hike may not be for you. Many people on the trail turned around because they were too afraid to continue to the top. This hike offers great views!
Hanging Rock Trail:
Short hike, and pretty much right next to Moro Rock. You can hike both of these hikes in about one hour. Great views and can see Moro Rock from this hike to see what you just did, or are about to do, or maybe just want to observe other people doing it. It also offers the view of the hanging rock. It is right at the edge of a cliff but is still hanging on!
Crescent Meadow: Hike takes about one hour. Elevation more level than the rest of the hikes. It is a loop trail that takes you around a meadow and is great for wildlife viewing, especially bears! I was able to see one myself. My first golden brown black bear. Only seen black bears black before, never golden brown so I was pretty excited! John Muir, the father of our National Parks stated that crescent meadows is the “gem of the sierras.” There are also other hikes around the area.
Note: You can hike from Moro rock to Crescent Meadows instead of taking the road. You get to walk on the high-sierra route and see some amazing views! Plus if you like solitude, this is the hike for you. Moro Rock can get very busy, so this is a great wind down hike to feel more immersed back into nature.
Tokopah Falls: 3.4 mile round-trip back and forth hike. It is the tallest waterfall in Sequoia National Park. You follow the river pretty much the entire path until you reach the falls. There is a campground at the base of this hike so for the first .1-.2 miles of this hike you see the campground right alongside the river.
Crystal Cave: If you are a cave person, you can check out this cave hike. The park protects more than 250 caves but this one is open to the public. Need to contact the park service to do this hike. (559)565-3759
For Backpackers!!!! Mineral King is a backpackers heaven! Highly recommended by the parks themselves. If your going backpacking, I highly suggest you equip yourself with a Topo map.
Well I hope you enjoyed this article and it helped plan your adventure a little bit. Thank you for reading!