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Blog for Victoria Bennett Beyer Photography

The photography blog of Victoria Bennett Beyer, featuring travel photographs from road trips across America and botanical photography of plants, flowers and leaves.

Filtering by Tag: national parks

Sequioa National Park

Victoria Beyer

Seven Weeks Across America

General Sherman Tree

General Sherman Tree

Even if you've seen sequoia trees in a small grove before, you should still visit Sequoia National Park.  It is so awe-inspiring to see them everywhere you look.  There are paved trails that make accessing them easy. It's one of these paths that lead to the General Sherman tree - the largest tree in the world by volume.  It's about 2,000 years old.  Many other sequoias in the park are older, but it found a prime spot to grow which is why it is so very large.  It's really quite an experience to tilt your head back and just look up to the top of the tree.

That's not really a solitary experience in the summer, particularly when you are depending on the bus system to shuttle you around.  It was in fact a little distressing to see so many people behaving badly, collecting pine cones in bags, clearly to take home, and stepping off the trail to take photos with the sequoia trees, which hurts their shallow roots.  It was a tough lesson to teach my little Junior Ranger to hold her tongue instead of correcting the many people who were breaking the park rules. 

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We found some solace later by taking the Soldiers Loop Trail.  We saw only two other families on our hike, and we even left behind the sounds of the road. This, to me, was the best part of our Sequoia National Park experience. 

That and not having a bear break into our camper.  When we arrived at our campground, there was a sign saying there had been 3 car break-ins by bears in the past week.  A ranger drove through the campground every 15 minutes to look for any food that had been left unattended.  I'm happy to report I didn't so much as see a bear during our stay.

Tunnel Log, which you can still drive through. Unless you are in an RV.

Tunnel Log, which you can still drive through. Unless you are in an RV.

Canyonlands National Park

Victoria Beyer

Seven Weeks Across America

2018-06 CCT Canyonlands (34) FIX.jpg

Canyonlands National Park was next on our itinerary.  It is comprised of three sections, all adjacent but each accessed by a different road, several hours apart.  The closest was Island in the Sky, which is the most visited.  There are amazing views just across from the visitor's center, and at several overlooks.  It's amazing you can walk right to the edge (and off the edge if you aren't careful).  It was really beautiful.

2018-06 CCT Canyonlands (138) FIX.jpg

The next day we decided to drive over to the next section over, called The Needles, after the pointy rock formations found there.  We stopped at the Visitor's Center, as we always do, and were well rewarded.  My daughter has been doing the Junior Ranger booklets at each national park to earn a badge.  I think that perhaps not too many children come through The Needles Visitor's Center, because the rangers there took so much time with her, and were the first ones to offer her the loaner backpack full of cool things like binoculars and plant id guides.  She was happy as a clam using all those goodies as we drove to the end of the road.  There is literally a barricade so you know to stop, and perched atop was a raven.