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Sunday in Sequoia National Park

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Sunday in Sequoia National Park

Postby wingding » Mon Oct 23, 2006 6:54 pm

After hiking to Mount Silliman in Sequoia NP on Saturday I decided to take it easy on Sunday. The mice got into my food that was in the bear box at Lodgepole, so I headed over to Wuksachi Lodge for breakfast because I didn't want to eat oatmeal flavored with mouse droppings.

After breakfast I did a the short hike to Little Baldy (3.4 miles round-trip with just a few hundred feet gain) to enjoy the view in the morning and then I went on the Crystal Cave tour. After the cave tour I did a hike on the Upper Colony Mill trail to check out the fall colors, which were really beautiful in the park. The trailhead for the Upper Colony Mill Trail starts along the Crystal Cave Road and I thought I would have plenty of time because my book says they lock the gate to Crystal Cave at 5pm each day. The Upper Colony Mill Trail is an old road that served as the entrance to Sequoia Park before the General's Highway was constructed. There is supposed to be an abandoned Ranger Cabin down there, but I didn't go down to it. I got to the junction where you choose either Administration Point or The Ranger Station at 1.5 miles and went a little ways toward the Ranger Station but it was really hot and dry that way, so I turned back and went the other way toward Administration Point because it was nice and shady that way. I dropped down about .75 mile until I got a good view toward the Great Western Divide before turning around - I thought I might be at Administration Point, but I wasn't sure. I headed back to my truck so that I would be out by 5 pm.

When I got back to my truck after the hike along the Upper Colony Mill Trail at about 4 pm I found a note telling me that they locked the gate to Crystal Cave Road and if I wanted to get out I had to go wait for Law Enforcement at the locked gate. I drove down to the gate, parked, and plugged in my dvd player so I could watch a movie while I waited. After about an hour Law Enforcement showed up - I wish the note had said that a nice ranger would come let me out instead of saying that I was to wait for Law Enforcement at the gate. The nice park ranger opened the gate, called in my driver's license to make sure I wasn't wanted by the authorities for stealing stalactites, and sent me on my way.

Here are pictures from the top of Little Baldy, Crystal Cave, and the Upper Colony Mill Trail:

Upper Colony Mill Trail:

Crystal Cave:

Hike to Little Baldy:


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Postby Trailtrekker06 » Mon Oct 23, 2006 9:08 pm

hee-hee! Great TR, Kathy. I was LOL! Okay, I'm gonna check out the pics, I know they'll be great! -S
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Postby krudler » Tue Oct 24, 2006 7:44 am

Awesome Kathy! :)
"Krusty, you know Bette Midler?"
"Yeah we own a racehorse together - the Krudler!"
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Postby The Other Tom » Tue Oct 24, 2006 5:41 pm

Very nice. What type of tree is that in pic 5 of Upper Colony Mill Trail (the reddish pink one) ?
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Postby wingding » Tue Oct 24, 2006 10:33 pm

I don't know my trees real well, but I think that's a dogwood in picture 5. The colors were really beautiful this past weekend.

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Postby SSSdave » Wed Oct 25, 2006 5:44 pm

Glad to hear you got to see some fall foliage color Kathy after missing the peak of aspen in the Eastern Sierra. The CC road is impressive with Pacific dogwood and black oak the whole way. (That gate closes 4pm in October.) Supprising few leaf chasers know about the Sequoia NP dogwood areas. The SR190 highway side dogwood is the most impressive in the state I've yet seen though tourists usually drive right by since there are no trails or scenic pullouts there. In fact the park shuts down for the winter after September so doesn't promote the big dogwood color show at all. I just came back today from a 5 trip including Sunday afternoon through Tuesday at Sequoia NP. Considered hiking that trail too except had too many other areas cued up to work if only a few clouds showed up. Had some decent thin cloud light part of Monday but otherwise has been too sunny for decent diffuse light and forecasts were for more of the same, so bailed on my trip this morning. ...David
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Postby wingding » Thu Oct 26, 2006 7:46 pm

David - This trip made me realize there's a lot more to fall colors in the Sierra than the Aspen on the east side. It would have been nice to run into you on the trail on Sunday.

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