Tuesday, May 26, 2009


If you happened to be a rancher named Jessie Hoskins in the 1890s, the answer might be yes. He wanted a place to stay during his summer visits to the Sierras and carved out a living space inside what is now known as "The Hercules Tree"

Balch Park is the sight of John Muir's favorite stand of Giant Sequoias. He wrote, "In the northern groves,there are comparatively few young trees or saplings. But here for every old storm-stricken giant there are many in all the glory of prime vigor, and for each of these there is a crowd of eager, hopeful young trees and saplings."

The Grasshopper, ever ISO new natural wonders, decided to visit the dendroids that so impressed the irrepressible Mr. Muir. It is a long and winding road up into the Western Sierras to reach this particular Sequoiadendron giganteum grove, but it was worth the trek. Due to the low-slung carriage of our expedition vehicle, we were only able to scratch the surface of the wonderful forest found there.

Talk about a room with a view!