On day three of our Sequoia and Kings Canyon trip we slept in and our plans for the day were much less ambitious than our previous day of hiking in Kings Canyon. After breakfast we packed a lunch for a quick trip to Crescent Meadow and Moro Rock. The last time I was in Crescent Meadows you could not drive up and park, it was too busy. Everyone had to take a shuttle. This time we were able to drive up and park. On the way up we saw a bear having his way with an old log. He was shredding it with very little effort.
We missed the turn-off to park at Moro Rock but saw a sign for the Sugar Pine Trail near the Crescent Meadow parking lot, so we decided to take this short 1.5 mile hike. After the 9.2 mile Mist Falls trail the day before this would be pretty easy. The trail was less traveled than most, and slightly overgrown. There were a lot of fire damaged trees on the trail, but it was a fun way to get to Moro Rock. Once we got to the base of Moro Rock we had a snack, then climbed the 350 stairs to the top. The stairs and flat sections of the trail to the top of Moro Rock are often on the edge of the rock. Great views, but watch your step! Here are a few pictures of our climb and descent.
The path is narrow for much of the way to the top. This is one of the narrowest parts.
Here is me and Sean on the same stairs.
Big smiles, but it is… a long way down!
Jenny stayed on the same stairs to get this picture of me and Sean further down.
A little further down the path you can see the view of the valley and mountains behind us. The peak of the mountain across the valley was in the clouds.
Sean wondered aloud how long this tree had been leaning against the rock… it looks like it has been there a long time.
We rode the shuttle back up to Crescent Meadow for lunch. We took a group picture at the Crescent Meadow sign
and then hiked to the Fallen Giant for lunch sitting by its roots.
Then we headed back to camp for homemade spaghetti and some family time around the camp fire.
On day four we spent the day fishing and swimming at Stony Creek, just a short hike from our campsite.
The trail across the first meadow, which stony creek meanders through, was very green and there were more blooms than I remember from the same time 2 years before.
The rest of the trail was pretty much the way I remembered it and the creek is beautiful but a little unnerving with the steep granite slopes on both sides.
It was a hot day, well over 80 degrees, so the first thing we did was hit the water. I knew from my previous visit that we would be sliding over the smaller of the two falls into very “refreshing” mountain stream water (read that as really, really cold!). A couple of years ago I had been a little reluctant as diving, jumping, or sliding in to dark pools of water is not really my thing. But this time I was eager. There was less water, it was a very warm day, and the 7-year-old did it first!
After the first time I started a little higher up, to get a better slide.
and a couple of seconds later over the edge I went! Only about a 6 foot drop from the bottom, but including the slide it’s about 12 feet.
Here’s another angle showing my brother-in-law getting ready to slide down the falls.
We had a great time at Stony Creek Campgrounds exploring Kings Canyon and Sequoia National Park.
Read about the first part of this trip here: Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park (Part 1 – Kings River, Cedar Grove, and Mist Falls Trail – June 2013)