We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

A week in Three Rivers?

Which Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park hotels are on sale?
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
See hotels
N.J.
posts: 120
reviews: 35
A week in Three Rivers?

We are looking to spend a week in Kings canyon and Sequoia National Park. We will be traveling with our family of five and my parents. We would fly into LA and drive in two rental cars. I see some houses we could rent in the Three Rivers are for a week but I'm not sure if we would want to split our stay between two different areas or not. From what I am reading (and having never visited here before) I can see that we will have a steep and narrow road once we go through the entrance from Three Rivers. I see that it can take up to an hour (ore more depending on weather/traffic) to get to the trees and visitor center. How much further from there to King's Canyon?

I am trying to decide if we would better to split our time between two different spots in order to enjoy both Kings Canyon and Sequoia. If we did, where would you recommend we stay besides Three Rivers?

Thanks so much.

24 replies to this topic
St. John
posts: 995
reviews: 22
1. Re: A week in Three Rivers?

You are not going to be happy staying outside the park for a week and doing the drive in/out and all the way to KIng's Canyon.

You would be much better off getting a cabin at Grants Grove which is between the two parks.

N.J.
posts: 120
reviews: 35
2. Re: A week in Three Rivers?

I think the cabins would work if we were only staying one or two nights but they wouldn't be too fun to spend an entire week. We like to have a fridge - pack picnics, eat breakfast on our own - maybe cook some dinner a few nights. The house we are looking to rent in Three Rivers has a kitchen, patio, and a grill. We will have my parents with us who really aren't as much into hiking. They will have their own rental car. I was hoping that by staying in Three Rivers they would have some other options.

I am wondering if we could find enough hikes just on the side of the park we are on to enjoy. A few trips up and down the curves and twists would be okay - but maybe some other hiking options for a few days not to have go all the way up???

St. John
posts: 995
reviews: 22
3. Re: A week in Three Rivers?

There are a couple of hikes from the lower campgrounds. A hike to a waterfall from Potwisha. A hike along paradise creek from Buckeye. You could also go to Crystal Cave without going all the way up one day. You definitely want to leave very early one day to go all the way into King's Canyon if you want todo some great hikes in the Canyon. Along the river, Zumwalt meadow, Hotel Creek or even the roundtrip to Mist Falls. It would be a long day so pack your lunch. Numerous hikes in the Giant Forest which is my favorite place in the world and I've been all over.

Enjoy whatever you decide.

N.J.
posts: 120
reviews: 35
4. Re: A week in Three Rivers?

Thanks so much for the input. I did go ahead and book the house in Three Rivers. It's the Sequoia Alta Vista and I think it will be a nice place to return to in the evening. We like to get up early and head out so a full day won't bother us too much. We can drive the one or two hours leaving around 7:00 am, get in a hike, have a picnic lunch, relax a little and head back down to Three Rivers to relax and let the boys swim the pool.

I think having the kitchen, grill, and laundry will make things easier even if we do have to drive a lot back and forth.

We stayed in Cody, WY on a trip to Yellowstone and it was quite a drive to get anywhere in the park from Cody. Two hours and one mountain pass but yet we still had a fantastic time and were able to see a lot.

Napa, CA
Destination Expert
for Napa
posts: 4,685
reviews: 22
5. Re: A week in Three Rivers?

I assume this visit will be in the summer. Currently, there is major road construction on the road from 3 Rivers to the Giant Forest creating long delays. It is scheduled to end in May so it should be OK for your visit. You can check on road conditions here:

www.nps.gov/seki/parknews/newsreleases.htm

If you want to go into Kings Canyon from 3 Rivers one day, you can get there quicker by driving around via Dry Creek Dr. and Hwy 245 to Ceadarbrook and then into the Park. You can also drive up to Mineral King from 3 Rivers where there are a number of good hikes and spectacular scenery. There's also some great swimming holes on the Kaweah River near the Buckeye Flat campground if you are there after Spring runoff.

N.J.
posts: 120
reviews: 35
6. Re: A week in Three Rivers?

Hi,

Yes, we will be there the last week in August. I have read about the construction the National Park website. I am hoping that the delays won't be two hours by August - but expect that we will still have some.

Thanks for the tip about getting to King's Canyon. We do want to make a day trip out of it.

Mineral King looks lovely - I see that it is another narrow road that goes straight up but that will be part of the fun.

Any other tips would be greatly appreciated. This will be our first visit to this area. We enjoyed Yosemite two years ago and wanted to come back to see more of this part of the country.

Las Vegas, Nevada
Destination Expert
for Las Vegas
posts: 4,790
reviews: 48
7. Re: A week in Three Rivers?

I am with larryjohn, staying a week in Three Rivers and hoping to explore the parks is not the best plan. You can hope all you want the road delays will not be there in August, but most likely they will. I have seen it take an extra 2 hours to get to Sherman Tree due to construction delays. A day trip from Three Rivers to Kings Canyon in IMO would not be fun. 3 hours each way does not leave much time to see that area of the park.

May be split your time. A few days in Three Rivers and a few in the park.

Fremont, California
Destination Expert
for San Francisco
posts: 12,819
reviews: 344
8. Re: A week in Three Rivers?

Ugh!!!!

You are making a HUGE HUGE HUGE HUGE mistake.

Three Rivers is not the place to stay at all.

The drive in and out of Sequoia is horrible even for those who love love love

driving switchbacks.

The area is not very scenic.

Can you cancel - if you can, do so.

N.J.
posts: 120
reviews: 35
9. Re: A week in Three Rivers?

No, I am stuck now with a 50% deposit on the house. Ugh!!!!! Guess we are going to have to make the best of it.

St. John
posts: 995
reviews: 22
10. Re: A week in Three Rivers?

You will have fun no matter what.

A day in 3 Rivers, a day in Mineral King, a day by the river the hiking the lower elevations, a day or two in the Giant Forest or all day to KIng's Canyon.

Enjoy.

Reply to: A week in Three Rivers?
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted