Instead of going for the long hike I'd been planning, I decided to be a tourist. I'd go check out the General Sherman Tree, the biggest tree in the world. Since I wasn't really in serious hiking mode, I forgot to change into my hiking boots:
I also forgot my trekking poles. Oh well, it was about a half a mile to the tree. Then, I decided, I'd continue on for another 2.5 miles down the Congress Trail to the Alta Trail and back to the Giant Forest Museum. From there, I could catch a shuttle back to my car.
Here's the General Sherman Tree, in the center. It's hard to see how big it really is, until you look at the size of the people standing at the bottom.
Here are some closer shots of it. Look at the size of the fence compared to the tree in the first pic.
The General Sherman Tree is the largest tree in the world by volume and weight, but not height, width, or age. The widest tree at the base is the General Grant Tree (40 feet). The General Sherman Tree is 52,500 cubic feet and it weighs 1385 tons. Its circumference at the base is 103 feet, and it is 2200 years old. It is 36.5 feet in diameter at its base.
From there, I continued down the Congress Trail to the Alta Trail. It was not long before I saw another bear, a little guy with a red ear tag.
I left him after snapping a few pics and went on my way. The trail went past several big trees named after presidents and generals (General Lee, McKinley, etc). As I was going, I heard a loud noise and looked up to see yet another bear running away from me. This was the only bear that actually ran away from me, and the only one I did not get a picture of. I finished the hike, taking pics of flowers and things as I went.
By the way, my feet really, really hurt after a few miles in my sandals. I also forgot to bring my trekking poles. I won't ever do either of those things again. After my short hike, I left to drive up to King's Canyon National Park. On the way, I saw two things of not. First, a bear eating gooseberries:
Second, a wildfire. Photos of that will follow in my next post.