Day Hikes inside Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias
California Giant Sequoias and Coast Redwoods: Yosemite National Park is world famous for its impressive waterfalls, meadows, cliffs, and unusual rock formations, but there are also three impressive and iconic Groves of Giant Sequoias.
The Giant Sequoias and Coast Redwoods are the sole living species of the genus Sequoia in the cypress family Cupressaceae. The Giant Sequoia are found in the Sierra Nevada and the coastal giant redwoods found in Redwood National Park, and other State Parks located in Northern California. The Redwood tree is an evergreen, long-lived, monoecious tree living 1,200–1,800 years or more. This species includes the tallest living trees on Earth, reaching up to 379 feet (115.5 m) in height and up to 29.2 feet (8.9 m) in diameter. These trees are also among the oldest living things on Earth. The Giant Sequoias are much larger and older than the Coast Redwoods, they can be as old as almost 3000 years, 275 feet (83 m) tall, and is over 36 feet (11 m) in diameter at the base.
The Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias: Mariposa Grove is a grove of giant sequoias located near in the southernmost part of Yosemite National Park. It is the largest grove of giant sequoias in Yosemite National Park, with several hundreds of giant sequoias in this iconic grove, two of its trees are among the 30 largest giant sequoias in the world. One of the trees in this grove is known as the Grizzly Giant, a giant and ancient sequoia-between probably 2000–2400 years old: this is the oldest tree in the grove.
The Mariposa Grove was first visited by non-natives in 1857 when Galen Clark and Milton Mann found it. They named the grove after Mariposa County where the grove is located, and in 1864, President Abraham Lincoln signed an Act of Congress ceding Mariposa Grove and Yosemite Valley to the state of California, which lead later to the establishment of Yosemite National Park on Oct 01, 1890.
Mariposa Grove Top Giant Trees of Sequoias Include :
The Fallen Monarch, is a tree that fell more than three hundred years ago; the Washington tree is the largest tree in the grove, with a volume of 35,950 cubic feet (1,018 m3), the California Tunnel Tree was cut in 1895 to allow coaches to pass through it (and as a marketing scheme to attract visitors to the grove), this is the only living giant sequoia tree with a tunnel in it since the fall of the Wawona Tunnel Tree in 1969 and the fall of the Pioneer Cabin Tree in 2017. Other top trees include: The Faithful Couple, the Clothespin tree, the Telescope tree – a tree that has become completely hollow from repeated fires through the decades. Despite that, the tree is still living, as giant sequoias do not require a whole trunk to survive. It is possible to walk inside the tree and, from there, see the sky. This condition leaves the tree weakened and makes it more difficult for it to withstand strong winds. This tree (and the Clothespin Tree) could topple at any time. The Columbia tree is the tallest tree in the grove and in Yosemite National Park at 285 feet (87 m). The other knows trees are the Galen Clark tree, the Fallen Giant and the Massachusetts tree.
Hiking in Mariposa Grove: the hiking Distance from the parking lot inside the grove: 2.2 miles (3.5 km) round trip for the lower grove; and 5 – 6 miles (8 – 10 km) round trip for both the lower and upper groves. Depending on the hiking trail you may choose, the hiking time may take from 1 to 6 hours to complete the entire loop to reach Wawona Point Vista at the top of the forest, it’s a 6-mile hike with 1,200 feet of elevation gain. The 1.6 miles out and back to the Grizzly Giant and California Tunnel Tree is recommended for visitors, hikers and even bingers.