While California’s high Sierras have a plethora of infinitely beautiful and unique areas to explore, few are as coveted as Calaveras Big Trees State Park in Arnold. Big Trees State Park is open to visitors year-round and is California’s;s longest continuously operated tourist facility. Located at 4,800 feet in elevation, the park boasts an impressive 6,000+ acres which include two groves of giant Sequoias, camping and picnicking areas, miles of developed hiking trails, fishing opportunities, and breathtaking scenery. The “Discovery Tree” stump is a popular stop for anyone visiting the park. Other attractions include the Agassiz Tree, the largest in the park, and the Lava Bluffs Trail, which affords beautiful displays of the areas’ indigenous wildflowers in the warmer months. In winter, the park is a popular destination for the more adventurous snowshoes and cross-country skiers.
Calaveras Big Trees State Park is a place where one can literally step back in time by simply walking into the forest, for these giant sequoias are thousands of years old. Some of the world’s largest trees exist here in one of its smallest corners. They are the sentinels at the gates of the high country, the juggernauts of the Sierras, whispering their rich history to anyone willing to listen. They appear almost untouched by time, serving as a reminder that the world used to be a much bigger place. These trees that once dominated the northern hemisphere now only exist naturally in one place–the western slopes of California’s Sierra Nevadas. Reaching heights of up to 300 feet and measuring 30 feet or more in diameter, these towering ancients give credence to the parks name and draws visitors from every corner of the globe.
Calaveras Big Trees State Park is one of the most coveted assets of the Sierras. Whether you are looking to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life for a weekend or are looking to call this area home, the Arnold Area near Big Trees State Park is the place to go. The timeless beauty of the forest and the serenity of the mountains provides solace for even the weariest of souls. As John Muir himself described it, Big Trees State Park is “A ﬂowering glade in the very heart of the woods, forming a ﬁne center for the student, and a delicious resting place for the weary.”
Big Trees State Park is the place to come find your soul.