National Parks Depot Blog » nature
Sequoia National Park is one of the most incredible and unique places in the world. With treetops towering at nearly 300 feet and over 404,000 acres of preserved land, this vast California park is comprised of 97% wilderness and offers 800 miles of uncrowded hiking trails. Technically referred to as Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park, as the two parks are now recognized as one by the National Park Service, this breathtaking landscape certainly boasts the best of both. Mountains, canyons, and giant sequoias are but a few of the wondrous displays of nature that can be found here.
Sequoia National Park is also home to the largest living organism on the planet ― General Sherman Tree. While it is not the tallest tree on the planet, nor the widest, it is estimated that General Sherman Tree is between 2,300 and 2,700 years old, making it a middle-aged sequoia skyscraper. (The oldest recorded giant sequoia is believed to have reached 3,500 years, based on tree ring counts.) It is, however, believed that General Sherman Tree may be the fastest growing tree of its kind. It would also appear that a giant sequoia could essentially live forever if it were not for an unprecedented catastrophic event, such as a fire or by erosion. We can barely begin to imagine all that this tree has seen and endured during its lifetime. From climate change to forest fires to the age of the modern man... it’s truly amazing to think about!
If you plan on visiting the park, which we highly recommend you do, don’t miss out on hiking the park’s most rewarding and challenging trail, Trail of the Sequoias. This 5-mile loop climbs over several ridges, down into four secluded meadows, and leads you into a forest full of sequoias. While there are other popular trails to embark on, such as the Congress Trail and Big Trees Trail, the Trail of the Sequoias is an excellent path to take if you seek solitude. If you ever find yourself fortunate enough to explore the land of the giants in your lifetime, consider it both an honor and a privilege. Relax, take your time, and soak in the beauty and wonder that surrounds you.
Inspired by our previous post where we analyzed several ways to get a campfire started, we thought it would be fun to share our favorite camping recipes with you so you can put those fire-starting methods to the test in the most delicious way possible! Here are our top five camping recipes that you should definitely try out this season. (Thanks, Pinterest!)
#1. Campfire French Toast by This Lil Piglet
What better way to start your day than with the comforting taste of French toast? The aroma itself is enough to make you unzip your tent at the crack of dawn just to load up your plate. Making French toast on the go is surprisingly low maintenance and best of all, it's ready to serve within minutes. This particular recipe calls for strawberries, making it an extra sweet treat, but we bet it would taste just as heavenly if you were to substitute bananas or blackberries instead. Foraged berries, anyone?
#2. Campfire Crescent Dogs by Tablespoon.com
After a sweet breakfast, you'll probably be craving something savory for lunch. Rather than slapping together a humdrum sandwich or sticking a solo hot dog on a skewer (boring!), why not make it interesting? This simple yet tasty recipe for Campfire Crescent Dogs will take your hot dog to the next level. How have we never thought of this before?! It's almost TOO easy...
#3. No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Granola Bars by Live Well Bake Often
It's always a good idea to bring some healthy snacks along on a camping trip. Between the s'mores and the the booze, it's easy to overindulge and accidentally leave your body without the energy it needs to explore the great outdoors. In addition to packing fruit and trail mix, how about whipping up some No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Granola Bars to take with you? They take less than ten minutes to make and they taste so much better than pre-boxed, processed granola bars.
#4. Dutch Oven Pizza by Scouting Magazine
All right, pizza fiends. This one's for you. This recipe for Dutch Oven Pizza makes it totally possible to enjoy a slice (or two... or five) for dinner no matter how far away from civilization you are. Gather 'round the fire and savor the moment, because once everyone has a taste, it's going to go fast. So yeah, you probably won't be getting a pizza delivered the next time you go camping, but we're pretty sure this will be just as good.
#5. Skillet Strawberry S’mores by Begin With Nutrition
A camping trip is rendered incomplete without s'mores, and that's a fact. But the great thing about making them is that you can either go the classic route, or you can get inventive. This recipe for Skillet Strawberry S'mores makes it easy for everyone to share and enjoy dessert together, rather than the traditional method using individual skewers. In addition, using a skillet gives you the freedom to add extra ingredients if you desire. Just imagine the possibilities...
If you get the chance to try any (or all!) of these recipes, leave a comment below and let us know how it goes! Happy cooking!