Yosemite's Mariposa Grove

So, we spent two whole weeks just outside the southern entrance to Yosemite (well, "just outside" being like 45 minutes)......and you what, we only managed to get into the park once.....one time and that is all!  So, for the single afternoon we were there, we did what we typically do....a ranger hike!  Our kids are Junior Rangers, and without exception (yet) we ALWAYS go on at least one ranger hike to both fulfill their junior ranger badge requirements, but also because with the rare exceptions, the rangers are awesome, passionate, and we typically learn something along the way....this was no exception, and was without a doubt the best ranger program we've attended so far (which is partly why the photos were scarce, that and like the Redwood National Park, the tree's just don't photograph well).

Anyway, these are NOT the coastal redwoods that grow almost 400' tall, these are the Giant Sequoias (Sequoiadendron giganteum) located only in the immediate area of the park....more specifically, the Mariposa Grove.  Although these trees are not nearly as tall as their coastal counterparts, they make up for it in mass -- they are enormous!

A baby sequoia

The Grizzly Giant, one of the more famous trees in the grove

More Grizzly Giant

Another closeup of the Giant, notice the fire damage near the base?


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