Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Kings Canyon National Park Wheelchair Accessible Trail

We spent Memorial Day weekend in Fresno this year. Partly to visit with family and friends in the area and partly to just get away for awhile. We decided it would be a lot of fun to visit some national parks nearby. Martina was dead set on going  to Yosemite since I had never been and it is probably her favorite national park. However, others in the group wanted to go and see Kings Canyon since they hadn’t seen been there (Martina hadn’t either, but she really wanted me to see Yosemite). Well, Kings Canyon won (we still made it to Yosemite though) and it was fabulous.

It was a nice drive through some rural areas of California, which before marrying Martina, I had no idea existed. We got to the park and found it had several accessible trails - perfect for our little crew!

We started our day in the park by hiking to General Grant tree. The trees were enormous! I had never been around such amazing trees. Boston saw that some had fallen and constantly asked why. Even after we explained why to him he kept asking, so then we made him tell us why. It was cute that he was so curious and noticing his surroundings, or at least it was the first 10 times…

Along the trail, we came across a fallen tree that had once been used as a shelter. Walking through it, I easily understood why it was used as a shelter and immediately wished I had my own giant tree to hang out in. The trees are seriously that large. In fact, one placard told the story of how some men cut down a tree to showcase at a world’s fair (or something of the sort) and people thought it was a hoax, since a real tree couldn’t be that big.

Admittedly, I had no idea why the General Grant tree was a destination, I had already been wowed by the hike, what could this single tree offer? While it wasn’t exactly breathtaking, it was impressive, made more so as I learned more about it.

FUN FACT: General Grant tree is the third largest tree in the world and thought to be roughly 3500 years old!

After seeing General Grant tree and breaking for snacks we decided go to the very bottom of the canyon.

FUN FACT: Kings Canyon is actually the deepest canyon in North America

His "I don't want to be wet" face
It was a beautiful drive in cool, crisp air. We stopped at one point to admire a waterfall and the nearby river, which was raging. You could feel the mist of the waterfall from a good distance away and many people we absolutely drenched. As we didn’t have extra clothes we opted to keep our distance and stay dry.

We eventually reached the “End of the Road” at the bottom of the canyon, which wasn’t very exciting and as we didn’t have much time for hiking around, we pretty much just turned around and headed back out the canyon. At least we can  mark it off our bucketlist. The highlight of getting to the bottom though was probably introducing Boston to a “proper” national park restroom. He had all sorts of questions, everything about the smell, why there was no handle for flushing, and what was in the hole. I won’t go into detail here, but it was not a conversation I ever thought I would have. #parentlife

All in all, the trip to Kings Canyon was great. Taking in another the beauty of another national park just makes me feel good. It was great to disconnect from technology and just enjoy the scenery, spend time with family, and relax.

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