The General Sherman Tree

General Sherman Tree, Sequoia National Park.
General Sherman Tree at the north end of Giant Forest.

National Park Service/Rick Cain

The General Sherman Tree is the world's largest tree, measured by volume. It stands 275 feet (83 m) tall, and is over 36 feet (11 m) in diameter at the base. Sequoia trunks remain wide high up. Sixty feet above the base, the Sherman Tree is 17.5 feet (5.3 m) in diameter.

Visiting the General Sherman Tree

Two trails lead to the Sherman Tree. The Main Trail is half a mile (0.8 km) trail down to the tree. It has some stairs and is paved. As you walk, you'll enter the Giant Forest Sequoia Grove. Exhibits along the trail explain the natural history of giant sequoias. The walk back is uphill.

For those with disability parking placards, a wheelchair-accessible trail leads a short distance to the tree from a parking area on the Generals Highway. If you don't have a placard but can't manage the Main Trail, ask at any visitor center for a temporary parking permit, or ride park shuttles to the accessible trail when they are in service. During shuttle season, another option is to park at the Main Trail, walk to the Sherman Tree, then continue to the shuttle stop along the Generals Highway. A shuttle can return you to your parking area, eliminating the uphill walk.

A fence protects the shallow roots of the Sherman Tree. Please help us protect the tree by staying on the paved trail.


The Sherman Tree in Winter

When snow falls, the accessible parking area becomes available for all and the main parking area closes. The trail to the Sherman Tree can be very snowy or icy. Consider renting snowshoes or skis. If you choose to walk, avoid stepping in ski tracks.

The timing of winter snow varies tremendously between seasons and is very difficult to predict. Snow can fall anytime from October into June.

On some winter holiday weekends, a winter shuttle provides transportation from Lodgepole and Wuksachi to the Sherman tree Trail.


Exploring Further

Hundreds of monarch sequoias grow in the Giant Forest Sequoia Grove. The Congress Trail, a paved two-mile loop that begins near the Sherman Tree, offers excellent opportunities to see notable trees. Big Trees Trail, a one-mile (1.6 km) loop around a lush meadow, has interpretive exhibits about the natural history of giant sequoias. For a longer walk, explore the many miles of trails in the area.

Beyond the Giant Forest, more sequoia groves await. Visit the world's second-largest tree, the General Grant Tree in the Grant Grove area of Kings Canyon National Park. Other groves such as Redwood Canyon and Muir Grove are destinations for longer hikes.


Statistics about the General Sherman Tree

Height above Base 274.9 83.8
Circumference at Ground 102.6 31.1
Maximum Diameter at Base 36.5 11.1
Diameter 60' (18.3 m) above base 17.5 5.3
Diameter 180' (54.9 m) above base 14.0 4.3
Diameter of Largest Branch 6.8 2.1
Height of First Large Branch above the Base 130.0 39.6
Average Crown Spread 106.5 32.5

See the list of all the 30 biggest giant sequoias.

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

47050 Generals Highway
Three Rivers, CA 93271


(559) 565-3341
Recorded information is available 24 hours a day. Park staff answers calls on weekdays from 8:15 am - 4:15 pm.

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