A March Day Trip to Sequoia National Park

Earlier in March, we took a day trip from to Morro Bay to Sequoia National Park. There are lots of cool things to see and do in both Sequoia and the nearby Kings Canyon National Park, but our mission was to see some of the tall sequoias in the National Forest and especially the General Sherman Tree.

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My number one hot tip for journeying up to Sequoia Forest in March? Check the weather forecast first!

We were definitely caught off-guard to leave Morro Bay in the upper 60 degrees F and find ourselves in Sequoia facing this:

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And this!

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All the cloud/snow/fog in that photo is obscuring the mountainside – we were at an elevation of about 6,000 ft here.

We weren’t deterred. We rented some snow chains for our tires and my husband put them on. He is from Minnesota so I figured, he knows what he’s doing!

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He told me afterwards he had never put snow chains on a car before, but he had put them on a lawn mower. Apparently, in Minnesota they attach snowplows to lawn mowers to clear snow in the winter! Me (from Atlanta) and the man renting the snow chains to us (from California) were both gobsmacked to hear this.

When we made it to the pull off for the trail to the General Sherman tree, the lot was sparsely populated and looked like this:

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Still not deterred! We made our way to the tree in 6 inches of snow.

Worth it:

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The General Sherman Tree is the biggest living tree by volume in the world – 275 feet tall, and 36 feet in diameter….

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It was awe-inspiring to gaze up and take in the size of this tree surrounded by so many tall, beautiful sequoias in the forest.

We made it back down the winding mountain roads safely, turned in our snow chains, and headed on. On our way back we stopped at In-N-Out and chatted the whole way about what an odd but amazing day it had been.

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This was definitely a unique experience for me and a story I think I will be retelling for many years!

p.s. – But seriously… did anyone else know that there are places where they put snow chains on lawn mowers?? I learn amazing things all the time.

 

xo

Kate

A Central European Road Trip

I just got back in Prague earlier today after a business trip to Budapest, Hungary. I’m in love with Budapest itself, and the road trip getting there was great, too!

From Prague to Budapest is about a 5 hour drive – across the Czech Republic, through Slovakia, and into Hungary.

From the road along the way, we could see large clusters of old Soviet-constructed buildings around the outskirts of cities. These are outside Brno, Czech Republic….

soviet structures.
The Soviets’ theory was to build uniform apartment buildings so everyone would be equal, but today it’s an odd feeling to pass so many identical buildings.

We stopped to refuel in Slovakia, in the midst of vast cornfields….
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At one point, we could see Austria and it’s windmills in the distance….
austrian windmills.
Coming into Hungary, we passed through an old, mostly untended border checkpoint. Because of the open border policies of the Schengen Agreement, this disused border station is falling into disrepair.
open border.

The road trip across part of Central Europe was a great way to see some of the countryside here. : )