Debra Alison | San Diego Photographer
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Walking with Giants: Backpacking Sequoia National Park

After my adventures in Yosemite National Park, I realized I had never posted about my trip to the Sequoias, which is just a bit south of Yosemite. I had written this years ago for publication, but never finished. I figured this post still deserves to be shared. It was my first backpacking experience ever and the trip itself was a wreck. Memorable, but still fun!


The original plan was to backpack Rae Lakes loop in King's Canyon National Park. A pit stop to a local watering hole before entering the parks had some bad news waiting for any visitors. Kings Canyon was engulfed by flames & smoke, taking along with it any plans to backpack Rae Lakes. The bar keep allowed me to park behind the bar overnight, so under a canopy of trees, high into the mountains with a bright sky of stars I slept. Yes, this was behind a local bar! In adventuring spirit, we took a detour down Sequoia National Park for and backpacked to find this beautiful ridge called Mt. Silliman Pass.

Just look at this magical forest that looks right out of a fairy tale!!!

Just look at this magical forest that looks right out of a fairy tale!!!


It was 6700 ft elevation at Lodgepool visitor center headed along Twin Lake Trail. The first night camp was made at Clover Creeks, I slept to the sound of trickling waters and woke to the more picturesque forest scene I've ever seen.

Once I made it to Twin Lakes, I was tired and set on spending the night there. My adventure buddy insisted on continuing up another mountain. The whole way up I whined, argued and actually cried because I was so deliriously tired and angry. I was SO ANGRY. I only learned after the fact that I was probably suffering from altitude sickness because I was so loopy and irritable. Once I finally made it up, the view alone made me burst into tears. There may or may not be video footage and photos of me - YOU'LL NEVER KNOW. We made it to the top of Silliman Pass, an astonishing 11,188 Ft and camped at the tip top overlooking the world. Taller than any Sequoia.

backpacking Sequoia National Park

Shout out to REI for having everything imaginable that I would ever need! And my LOWA boots that I wear everywhere