Thursday, July 11, 2013

Now Entering Giant Forest!

The drive into Sequoia National Park was really enchanted.  The rocky mountain peaks seemed like they belonged in a Lord of the Rings movie.  It was foggy and cold and not at all like I expected.  But I really didn't know what to expect.  It seemed to take forever to drive the RV through the windy roads to our campsight.  Probably about an hour.

Once we saw this sign though we were all super excited.  

Soon we sighted our first giant Sequoia.  We were all wowed.

Here were in the Lodgepole campground area, on a shuttle, getting ready to go see General Sherman---the largest living tree.  (it's largest in volume...not in height or width)

The boys really enjoyed the shuttles.  They were convenient!

We are walking on the trail that leads to General Sherman.  This is where Isaac drove our new, rather costly stroller off the path to avoid some stairs and flipped it (the boys were fine), and the front wheel became permanently bent.  Bummer.  Big bummer.  It still worked (thankfully) but not quite as easy to push.  There should have been a sign warning us not to bring a stroller because there were quite a few stairs!

Many of the trees were covered in this really cool yellow-green moss.

So here we all are with the famous tree....and I look like a total nerd in my tick-repelling attire.  I didn't really mind at the time, at all, dressing like a total dweeb, with my silly thrift store narrow legged khaki pants and my long white socks pulled up over my pants, while doning them underneath my really cool keen sandals.  Complete all that with an old navy blue sweatershirt, and well........let me make it official....I don't know me.  

One of the other places we wanted to visit within the park was Crescent Meadow.  We heard we could spot bears there pretty easily.  Why we wanted to see bears in the flesh, I haven't the foggiest.  Thankfully we didn't see any.  Probably because we never made it to Crescent Meadow.  (the theme of this trip was not making it to the planned on destinations)  A shuttle bus driver told us to take this trail to crescent meadow.  We had our stroller.  The trail was extremely narrow and rocky.  We made it about 1 mile into this 2 1/2 mile trail (thankfully someone came along with a map to tell us how much farther we had to go to make it) when we realized we could not manage the stroller any longer.

Thankfully Isaac had a really good attitude about carrying it----calling it football conditioning.  Go Isaac!  Everyone carried something and Steve and I alternated with Benjamin and Samuel.  They both wanted to be carried.  

We found this giant pine cone along the way and I assumed it belonged to the Giant Sequoia.  Back at the museum we discovered it did not.  The Sequoia tree's pine cone is about the size of a quarter!  This belonged the Sugar Pine Tree.

After finally making through  the seemingly eternal 2 1/2 mile hike with the boys (boy I wish we had had our ergos!!!!), we made it to a destination I NEVER wanted to go to.  A mountain peak called "Moro Rock".  By this time I'm really tired, really nauseated, and extremely weary of heights.  This was a very steep climb to the tip-top of the mountain rock with steep cliffs and drop offs all along the way.  I was scared the entire time for my boys.  And the elevation was really getting to me.  

But for the boys I hiked on to the top.  They can add this to their memory banks.  

Back at the campground that evening, stinkin' dirty was the name of the game.  

And this was the boys favorite thing to do.  Build fires.  And roast marshmallows.  Seriously.  We could have done this in Georgia.  Easily.  In the back yard.  I'm telling you.  Kids desires are simple.  But mom got to see the giant trees she has always dreamed of seeing.  And we added some significant events to all of our memory banks.  

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