Past Meetup

Overnight Camping and Hiking at Calaveras Big Trees State Park

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The Big Tree…is Nature’s forest masterpiece, and as far as I know, the greatest of all living things.–John Muir

Having recently moved back to California, seeing the Sequoia trees again has been at the top of our wish list. Join us for overnight camping, and we’ll visit the two groves of Giant Sequoias in Calaveras Big Trees State Park (

Saturday we will leave Sacramento at 10:00 am, arriving at the park about noon. After picking a camping spot and setting up tents, we will take time to explore the Visitor Center and museum. Then we’ll hike the North Grove (about a three mile hike).

Sunday we will break camp about 10:00 am and you may also join us for the optional hike of the South Grove (about 5.5 miles).

The Hikes. Saturday’s three mile North Grove loop and Grove Overlook Trails make an easy hike, mostly flat with elevation change of about 200 feet. Sunday’s hike--the optional 5.5
mile South Grove out-and-back--is listed as moderate, but the elevation change is only about 500 feet. With breaks and plenty of time to stop for pictures, the hike should last about 3.5 to 4 hours.

Camping. The peak season has finished and the park is no longer taking reservations, but rangers assured me there should be plenty of spaces open. Camping fees are $35. The campsites have fire rings and picnic tables; piped water, flush toilets and coin showers are nearby. The current weather forecast ( for Saturday is a high of 76 and low of 42. There is no cell phone service in the park.

Please feel free to contact me by email if you have any questions about the hikes or camping. If you would like to carpool or caravan to the park, send me an email and will arrange a meeting place. If you would like to carpool, we have space for four.