We left Dockweiller State Beach and the LA - Venice area on April 22 heading North. It was still Passover but we had our Matzoh. We stopped for gas and vehicle weights at the Flying J in Lebec. Flying J is a truck stop with everything a trucker needs; fuel, showers, phones, and certified scales as well as a restaurant. They also cater to RV's not to mention your average passenger car. For the RV's there are separate fuel islands, propane, water and a dump station and longer parking spots. RV's can use the regular passenger car fuel islands and parking spaces but I have never seen them in the trucker area. Flying J doesn't mind people spending the night in their parking lots as long as there are spots available for new customers who want to come into the all night restaurant. After weighing we found that we had sort of successfully shed our excess weight. By throwing stuff out, sending stuff home and moving stuff to a truck box, I bought for the back of the truck, we were no longer overweight. However the front trailer axle was at it's maximum with no room for more weight. Not really a desirable situation; however,we didn't let that stop us and we continued our trip stopping for the night a couple of hours away from Sequoia National Park. Limiting our driving to five hours or less has made the entire trip more pleasant.
The next morning we got up and drove to the park. We weren't quite sure where we would camp as the park has narrow roads and length restrictions. We were lucky, not far from the Western Entrance is a campground that has large spaces and is accessible to longer vehicles like ours. We set up in a site. Most National Park Campgrounds don't have hook ups and charge a nominal rate. This one was no different there were no hook ups and the rate was $18. Now that I had my Golden Age Passport we didn't have to pay the park admission fee and camping was only $9.
After disconnecting the truck and setting up the trailer we got into the truck for the half hour ride to visit the General Sherman Tree and the Sequoia Groves. As we drove up the mountain we began seeing patches of snow. By the time we reached the Visitors Center the ground was entirely covered.
Taking pictures of giant Sequoia's is kind of difficult as you can't get far enough away to get the entire tree in one frame. I didn't even bother to take a picture of the General Sherman but took two pictures to capture the "Sentinel" another large Sequoia. The General Sherman is advertised as the largest living tree but they need to review this situation. The coastal redwoods grow taller and there is a tree in Mexico that has a wider girth and now they discovered that there are Aspens that are attached to the same root system and are genetically identical. If you laid the base of the General Sherman on the goal line of a 100 yard football field the top would be at the opposing 9 yard line. We walked the two mile circular loop through the groves and passed Sequoia's called "The President", "The Senate" and "The House Group" a real bunch of great trees aptly named for the wooden heads of government officials.
I of course am dwarfed by these impressive trees. The next day was Thursday and we had a Friday reservation in Yosemite so we hung around the campground and hiked a mountain trail that was below the snow line.
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