“a testament to nature's size, beauty, & diversity”
A testament to nature's size, beauty, and diversity - huge mountains, rugged foothills, deep canyons, vast caverns, and the world's largest trees. Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks lie side by side in the southern Sierra Nevada, east of the San Joaquin Valley. Visitor activities vary by season and elevation (1,370 to 14,494 feet). The unusual diversity of climates and ecosystems in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks led to its designation as an International Biosphere Reserve. There are 580 reserves in 114 countries that hold this honor world-wide. Humans have traveled or lived in the Southern Sierra for at least 6-7,000 years. In the higher mountains, and also down into the western foothills, lived hunters and gatherers remembered today as the Monache or Western Mono. West of the Monache in the lowest foothills and also across the expanses of the Great Central Valley were a second group, the Yokuts. In the late 1700s and early 1800s, Spanish agents began exploring the edge of the Sierra Nevada Range. Within 50 years or so, trappers, sheepherders, miners, and loggers poured into the Sierra seeking to use the mountains' resources. By the end of the 19th century, San Joaquin Valley communities increasingly looked to the Sierra for water and recreation. In the struggle between all these competing interests, two national parks were born that became known as Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Today, the parks together protect well over 500 Native American archeological sites and over 100 historic sites. The number of recorded sites grows each year because of project surveys.
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Kings Canyon National Park
- Sun - Sat: 12:00 am - 11:59 pm
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