Sunday, September 16, 2007

Summer trips... first trip was off to Fresno/Kings Canyon/Sequoia National parks. Pete planned an overnight in Fresno so we could hang at a water park in the 100 degree heat - a great idea! Remarkably there were times when Quincy was even a bit cold (purple lips) despite the heat. We stayed in Sunset Campground for 3 nights in Grants Grove area of Kings Canyon. Our friends the Goldschmidts met up with us for a day from San Diego (they let us know they'd be out at the Nat Pk and we thought that sounded like a nifty plan). Our kids had a blast playing with their twins (aged between our kids) and their youngest was just over 2 but a great tag along. We spent one day driving out along the Kings Canyon - literally a huge canyon (one formed like Grand Canyon - with a stream down at the bottom). Pretty awesome views. No where near as touristed as Yosemite - the Nat Pk just a few miles to the north along the Sierras. We had a great hike at Zumwalt Meadows down by the river but also around the meadow and through a section of huge granite blocks. Very cool. We also had picnic lunch and got our feet wet in the very cold river at Roads End. Literally where the road ended... Grants Grove area has quite a few of the giant Sequoia trees in various groves. They are truly impressive. We are rather used to the coastal redwood sequoia trees - which are the tallest trees in the world. The giant sequoias are known as the world's largest biomass (with possible exception of some fungus thing recently found somewhere) - basically tall, but hugely FAT trees. The coastal redwoods are primarily a single tree type of forest - all redwoods. So it is hard to get a good perspective on their size altho there are always a few that have fallen down that help serve as good sense of scale. The giants on the other hand are in a mixed tree forest - can't remember the exact trees now but things like firs and pines. But this serves to make the giants even more impressive. They are also pretty interesting looking - very red huge trunk with tufts of needles way up high. Very easy to spot! If you want to check out photos from the trip click here. I tend to spend my energies after a trip in getting the photos sorted out and uploaded and labeled - and am mentally done with the trip and don't need to blog about it. I also can't see to figure out how to locate photos throughout the story. Bit of a bummer. We did see bears in Sequoia as we were about to leave - it was 5ish and they were out foraging - one ripping up downed logs to the left of the road and to the right was a mom and her two cubs digging around. Pretty cool.

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