This summer has consisted of many road trips, both planned and unplanned. However, a highlight of the summer was a trip to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park. I loved going here and sharing past family vacation memories with a new set of little ones. With a two and five year old in tow, we opted for approachable and family friendly hikes that they could manage as well.
Keep reading for some of our favorite easy day hikes from the trip!
Easy Day Hikes: Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
If you’re longing for a bigger adventure at the General Grant Loop, make sure to grab the Congress Trail off. This trail takes you deeper into the forest, revealing fern groves, large meadows, and my favorite part, avoiding the crowds. It adds anywhere from 1.5-3 miles to your hike depending on the path you choose and will return you back to the trailhead along the loop.
General Grant Loop
This is a must see in the park and is well worth it. Here you’ll see General Sherman among many other towering sequoias. As you stand alongside these massive trees, you’ll quickly find cycles of life. The seasons, use of wildfire, and fresh seedlings reveal a stunning and harsh reality. More than anything, I’m reminded as I stand beside these trees of the smallness of myself. Each major sequoia is 2,000-3,000 years old. They have and will continue to prosper for years to come. At a 0.3 mile loop, this trail is worth stop (it appeals to tourists for good reason). On this trip I was reminded of the previous trips to the park and loved sharing it with little ones again.
It’s easy to come to Sequoia and Kings Canyon and never reach the canyon. At the far side of the park, it’s easily on of the most underrated national parks. With stunning canyon views, make sure you take the hike to the top of Moro Rock. While considered a moderate hike, in full sun and 90 degrees, you’ll get a workout in. Make sure to pack at least one liter of water for this hike and if you’re taking little ones consider a hiking backpack if they’re toddlers. At the top of the rock, you’ll find the most spectacular view of the canyon and valley. It’s stunning to have this view of the forest from above.
Big Trees Loop
We started on this trail looking for something close and low elevation to the visitor’s center. It was mid morning and we were ready to walk, but found ourselves not wanting to commit to a long drive or hike. With a quick walk, we found ourselves on an elevated platform in a .5 mile loop around a meadow strewn with wildflowers. During our summertime visit, we embarked on a small and furry visitor in the middle of the meadow. A black bear cub had found its way to the middle of the meadow and decided to snack on grasses and flowers. His snack break was our gain as we were able to enjoy our first sighting of black bears in the park. (And not our last.)
Want to learn more about tips for Road Trips with Littles or Where We Stayed? Find the posts here and here.