Trip of Giants - Zumwalt Meadow

Published: August 6th 2010
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Woah! That night was cold! We really tucked in tight because it almost got frosty on us in the tent cabin (ie a wood cabin with a tent roof). Thank god the showers are hot - to thaw you out!

We take our time getting going - there's a number of things to see but no great rush. Because the place is full of weekenders I take us for a drive through the Kings Canyon to the end of the road at a place called Zumwalt Meadow.

The Kings Canyon is stunning. Huge outcrops soar into the sky, dropping to the Kings River bed far below. The Zumwalt Meadow is picturesque all the way around. Blue Jays meet us at the start of the 1 hour walk trail, a mule dear keeps an eye out on the walk, and butterflies bless us quickly as they flitter past.

We stop for a paddle in the cold but strong river afterwards. On the return drive we stop to look at Grizzly Falls, just 1 minute off the road. The falls are nice. Joseph has fun trying to collect the 'gold' in the stream bed. It was flakes of mica that glitter in the sun!

Next stop is Boyden Cave. I had thought we'd go in the more popular Crystal Cave in another part of Sequoia National Park, but we might as well do this one instead. It was pretty good. After a heart-wrenching climb up a steep path the guide Cristen takes us in and explains the various types of formations present. Despite repeated requests for customers not to touch the formations, most of the other people did. Not on a par with Mammoth, Jewel or Lakes caves in the southwest of W.A., but good enough. That is actually an enjoyable hour spent in the cool cave. At the store they are selling geodes that you can crack yourself. We don't buy one because I'm not sure where we stand on weight of all our luggage (turns out it would have been fine - oh well).

We return to the tent cabin and have pizza at the Pizza Cafe. The boys watch a movie they put on there "Happily Never After". While they do, Ky and I escape to the cabin for some moments of peace and quiet.

There is another presentation in the ampitheatre like the one I'd seen last night on the history of the Sequoias and national parks. This one on the black bears. We all go down for a watch and listen. Very well done by the Rangers.

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