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TR: Redwood Canyon with the 5yo

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TR: Redwood Canyon with the 5yo

Postby bitingspider » Wed May 29, 2013 9:44 am

The family backpacked down into Redwood Canyon in Kings Canyon Nat'l Park over Memorial Day weekend. There's a limit of 15 campers per night in the canyon, 10 reservable ahead of time, so we made certain to be at the Grants Grove visitor center a bit before 8am to grab 3 of the remaining 5 walkup permits. We car camped at Azalea the night before and while it wasn't full, it felt full, and it was noisy, and there were some latenight bozos reminding me that I should always bring earplugs and how much I hate busy campgrounds. Of course it was Memorial Day and I was pretty much expecting that. Luckily we've got a westy so the wife and kid can sleep downstairs with some good sound protection and get a decent sleep.

This was the 3rd backpack trip for my daughter with the other two being in the Los Padres. Some welcome contrasts were the lack of black flies and the lack of poison oak. We only backpacked in to the first flat area by the creek, about 2 miles in, and made home under some sequoias quite a ways from the creek, which was flowing, but not a lot by any means.

The dogwoods (yes, they're dogwoods, right?) were in full bloom and gorgeous. The sequoias were awe inspiring, and the trail was relatively lightly traveled considering it was Memorial Day weekend. There were basically no mosquitos. About a mile downtrail from our camp is the main camping area and all the other campers seemed to be there- I think we were in a legit place as we were well more than 100' away from water and well off the trail, but I couldn't find a sign of previous campers in our area. Regardless we're good LNT folks and packed *everything* out sans liquids. As usual, we overpacked clothes and food- all that and the platypus of wine made for a one heavy pack.

This is a great beginning backpack for kids as it's not that hard, though it is basically all downhill on the way in and so all uphill on the way out. If we return I'll probably aim for getting all the way down to the trail junction where the main camping was because the creek was bigger and had easier access for the kid to play in.

Next up, probably Weaver lake, or perhaps Twin Lakes if we can get a permit, or maybe Dorst Lake. Thoughts?
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Re: TR: Redwood Canyon with the 5yo

Postby maverick » Wed May 29, 2013 9:54 am

Hi Bitingspider,

Welcome to HST! Thank you for posting you first of many TR's to come here on HST! :)
Yes those are Dogwoods in the background, and yes they are gorgeous.
Last edited by maverick on Wed May 29, 2013 9:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: TR: Redwood Canyon with the 5yo

Postby tim » Wed May 29, 2013 11:39 am

Looks great. Its always fun introducing the kids to these wonderful places. I found SEKI a bit difficult to plan hikes with my younger son because most of the backpacking trails there seem to require a fairly significant hike in and/or elevation gain (at least 5-6 miles and 1000+ft are significant to him). Last year we wouldn't have got my son up to Paradise Valley for example (he's nearly 8): viewtopic.php?f=1&t=9327

We're in the Bay Area so Yosemite and Tahoe are convenient. If you can get to Yosemite easily enough then try Indian Ridge and North Dome from Porcupine Creek trailhead - its a wonderful hike, only 3 miles in and 300ft of climbing, and permits are readily available because most people do it as a day hike (but don't go late season this year because water will be scarce near the campsite): viewtopic.php?f=1&t=7702
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Re: TR: Redwood Canyon with the 5yo

Postby schmalz » Wed May 29, 2013 12:09 pm

Thanks for this trip report! I've always been curious about the area and now that I have a kid it's great to have some kid friendly trails for when he's ready.
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