Sequoia National Park
Oct 22, 2007
|Yesterday was moving day and I was up and at it early. I drove down the big mountain on Rt 120 and then took Rt 49 south. I had no idea how twisty, up and down and narrow it was. The total trip to Visalia was about 160 miles and about 50 to 60 of those miles were challenging mountain roads. I got to Visalia about 12:30 and have signed up for 7 days here. I didn't do much of anything after I got here except get set up, watch NFL football and mess around.
By the way, I think that I've found and repaired the leak that I mentioned recently. It was a rubber cap that had come loose exposing a hole where a wire went into the Winegard standard TV antenna (big rabbit ears). I put it back in place and sealed it with silicone. I hope that it holds.
Today I went to Sequoia National Park and in the process drove about 135 miles. Some beautiful scenery going in, and the drive is very twisty and gains altitude rapidly. More road construction, but this time I timed it just right and wasn't held up but a few minutes. They take people thru every hour on the hour and I came up on the end of the waiting vehicles at 11:00 on the nose and just made it in time to go right thru with them. If I had missed that I would have had to wait for an hour. The beauty of that was that there was no one behind me and I could take my time and stop in the middle of the road if I wanted to because there wouldn't be anyone behind me for an hour. I did just that and really enjoyed the quiet and solitude that I was able to have in this spectacular place. Rarely would one have the opportunity to have it all to yourself like I did this morning and I loved it.
And then came the Giant Forest, and it was just awe inspiring how huge those trees are. Pictures don't really do justice to how huge they are when you're standing right beside one of them. I spent a lot of time walking the Big Tree Trail and the General Sherman Tree trail. The General Sherman is the largest tree in the world, I'm told. There are a number of other trails in that area that I'd like to walk if I get a chance.
After walking the General Sherman Tree Trail I headed for home. I drove Rt 198 all the way from Visalia and thru the Park until it intersected with Rt 180. I then followed Rt 180 to Rt 63 which followed the valley back to Visalia. It seems that this area has a huge citrus crop because I saw many, many large groves of both oranges and lemons along the way. The economic vitality and prosperity that seems everywhere evident in the parts of California that I've seen still amazes me.
My next venture will be to King's Canyon and I believe that I'll drive all the way to the end of the road. The NP Ranger at the museum informed me that it is much like Yosemite Valley, without the crowds, and well worth the drive. She was very informative and helpful, not to mention very attractive.
I love having the DataStorm. I've figured out how to talk on the Skype phone so now I have internet, DirectTV and phone coverage no matter where I'm at, and I love that kind of freedom.
Tomorrow will likely be a day to shop, take care of details and chores and just mess around. I want to check out downtown Visalia and the surrounding area. I picked this area to camp because of it's proximity to Sequoia and King's Canyon, but it seems like a very nice small city that warrants checking out.
Enough for now.