• Giant Sequoia Trees

    Sequoia & Kings Canyon

    National Parks California

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  • Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks Institute Stage 2 Fire Restrictions

    Effective July 28, 2014, the parks are in Stage 2 fire restrictions. See link below for more information. These restrictions will remain in place until further notice. More »

  • Road Construction Delays on Park Roads for 2014 Season

    Expect occasional 15-min. to 1-hour delays in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks beginning Monday, June 2, weekdays only, between 5:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., including delays to/from the General Sherman Tree, Crystal Cave, and Grant Grove. More »

  • Vehicle Length Limits in Sequoia National Park (if Entering/Exiting Hwy 198)

    Planning to see the "Big Trees" in Sequoia National Park? If you enter/exit via Hwy. 198, please pay close attention to vehicle length advisories for your safety and the safety of others. More »

  • You May Have Trouble Calling Us

    We are experiencing technical problems receiving incoming phone calls. We apologize for the inconvenience. Please send us an email to SEKI_Interpretation@nps.gov or check the "More" link for trip-planning information. More »

Giant Sequoia Fire History in Mariposa Grove Abstract

Giant Sequoia Fire History in Mariposa Grove, Yosemite National Park. T.W. Swetnam, R. Touchan, C.H. Baisan, A.C. Caprio, and P.M. Brown. 1991. pp. 249-253. Yosemite Centennial Symposium Proceedings - A Global Issues Symposium Joining the 17th Annual Natural Areas Conferene with the Yosemite Centennial Celebration Oct. 13-20, 1990. 667 pp.

ABSTRACT - We reconstructed a 1,438-year history of wildfire in the Mariposa Grove of giant sequoia Sequoiadendron giganteum. Partial cross sections were taken from 18 dead fire-scarred trees, and tree rings and fire scars were dated. The resulting master fire chronology shows that fires recurred at intervals ranging from 1 to 15 years. Changes in fire frequency on time scales of centuries are also apparent. This fire history documents the long-term importance of fire in sequoia-mixed conifer ecosystems and illustrates the temporal variability of fire regimes.

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Did You Know?

Low fire burns through a grove during a prescribed burn.

Fire is an essential part of Sierra forest ecology. Plants and animals have adapted to the periodic, low-intensity fires that naturally occur here. In fact, sequoias need fire to open their cones and release the seeds, and to leave cleared beds of ash where they sprout and grow best.