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Help with October trip Itinerary

Houston, Texas
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Help with October trip Itinerary

Hey All,

We are a group of 4 (Husband and wife in 30's, a 3 Yr old child and 25 yr old cousin) from Houston planning a fall trip (Sept 30 - Oct 7) at sequoia.

We would prefer to do some sightseeing and child friendly hikes.

Below is our tentative plan:

Sept 30 - Arrive at OAK @11:00 AM (tickets already booked) and drive to SEKI. We already have a cabin booked at Three Rivers. Can we do any sightseeing on the way from OAK to SEKI?

Oct 1 - 5: Can someone please advise how we should plan these 5 days ? Any must-do attractions that are possible with a 3 Yr old? Wife really wants to do Moro Rock hike, General Sherman, Generals Highway, Kings Canyon, Crescent Meadow Loop, Crystal cave etc.

We understand that someone has to stay behind with 3 yr old for Moro Rock and Crystal cave.

What are the chances of snow during our stay?

Do we need to keep snow chains in the car?

All your replies are much appreciated.


Los Angeles
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for Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
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1. Re: Help with October trip Itinerary

I can't think of any sightseeing to do from OAK to Three Rivers. The time it takes to get from the East Bay to Three Rivers can vary quite a bit according to traffic. You'll be arriving in Three Rivers close to dinner time. Your priority should be checking in, checking out Three Rivers (it's pretty) and getting dinner (not a lot of choices).

3 is just a little too young for the full Moro Rock hike, so yes, someone has to stay behnd. If you have a backpack for the toddler, though, Crystal Cave is do-able with a three year old (have done it with a one year old and with a four year old).

Near Moro Rock, you'll want to walk around Crescent and Log Meadows, have a picnic and see Tharp's log. The three year old will enjoy both the Nature Center at Beetle Rock (or just Beetle Rock if Center is closed) and many aspects of the History Museum, as well as the interpretive trail near by. Round Meadow is another gem.

That may be too much for one day. There's a great little museum at the Lodgepole Visitor Center and a very child friendly Nature Center there. Not far from the Nature Center is the Lodgepole bridge and beach where depending on conditions (should be okay in October) you can wade in ankle deep water.

There is virtually zero chance of snow in October. I've never known it to snow in Seqouia in October. It's a lovely, quiet time of year when the squirrels (various kinds) and chipmunks are busy getting ready for winter. Woodpeckers, Stellar Jays and ravens all abound. You will likely see deer and possibly bears. You might see trout and minnows, either at Lodgepole or at the little Crescent Meadow bridge.

It takes about 2 hours to get from Three Rivers over to the first part of Kings Canyon (Grants Grove) Then it's about 40 minutes down into Kings Canyon, where there are plenty of hikes. Kings Canyon will take a whole day.

Back at Lodgepole, the Tokapah Falls trail is fairly flat and accessible for a small child (but again, I'd have one of those backpacks).

The Congress Trail (from the Sherman Tree area) is another worthwhile thing to see. If you spend 3-4 days in the park, you'll see way more. Sitting quietly away from other people (the Congress Trail may give you that) means you'll see way more.

Have a great time, don't worry about chains or snow.

Fremont, California
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for San Francisco
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2. Re: Help with October trip Itinerary

With a 3 year old, there is a very good mid size zoo at Fresno. Its also a good place to go for lunch as they have a covered cafe area where one can look out and see the many animals. I was surprised how good it is as its often not mentioned.


I walked the zoo in about an hour so it won't take a lot of time out of your trip.

Since you are at Three Rivers, the concerns in October are more fog related. It can start that early.

If its foggy, those 100 plus challenging switchbacks can be quite interesting to drive in October.

Your lodge should be able to help you if fog is an issue the day you are there.

Also fill up with gas before you get into the park. The gas station might be closed (which makes it even more interesting to drive those 100 plus switchbacks if you are worried about getting to the gas station at Three Rivers).

Snow is possible in October but its more like its 70 degrees, a snow shower shows up, it dumps some snow, you might find an inch on the ground (max) and you go back the next day and enjoy your day out. Its not a major issue that time of the year (and usually is more of a mid to late October event.) We don't carry snow chains that early and I would not drive the Three Rivers route if there is snow. its not worth your lives.

Los Angeles
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for Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
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3. Re: Help with October trip Itinerary

There is no gas in the park, so yeah, fill up at Three Rivers (where there should be two gas stations) or even earlier, because Three Rivers can be expensive.

4. Re: Help with October trip Itinerary

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