Record numbers of vehicles have entered these parks recently. In summer, on Fridays, Saturdays, and holidays from Memorial Day to Labor Day, long lines of cars have extended from the entrance stations. On a few of the busiest days, cars have waited over an hour to get through. Parking in some areas has also become crowded.
We are working hard to speed things up, and your cooperation helps:
Before You Arrive at the Entrance
- Arrive on weekdays, and/or early in the day.
- Buy your pass online before you get here.
- Have your money, pass, or credit card in hand when you get to the station.
- Time your trip to avoid road construction delays (up to an hour Monday through Friday when driving up to the Giant Forest from Three Rivers). There is also a full road closure Monday through Thursday nights from 8pm - 6am, with one pass-through at 8pm and one at 11:30pm. Vehicles over 22 feet are prohibited in this area.
- Fill your gasoline tank before you get to the park entrance.
- There are no restrooms at the entrance stations, and lines sometimes develop at restrooms at the first visitor center inside Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks.
- Download a copy of the park newspaper to read while you wait.
- Have snacks and water in your vehicle in case you have to wait.
- Campgrounds fill early and often. Make a reservation or other arrangements as soon as possible.
Once in the Parks
- Congestion on roads and in parking lots is heaviest in Grant Grove (Kings Canyon National Park) and in the Giant Forest (Sequoia National Park). It is especially heavy on weekends.
- Parking lots near popular features often fill by noon, and sometimes earlier. In Sequoia National Park, ride free shuttles from larger parking areas to avoid waiting for parking. In Giant Forest, park at the overflow lot at Wuksachi Lodge and ride free shuttles to the Sherman Tree and locations throughout Giant Forest.
- Store food properly as soon as you arrive, especially at campgrounds and picnic areas. Increased bear activity this year means food storage is extremely important. Use metal food storage boxes to store food and all scented items wherever they're available. If there are no boxes, keep food and scented items in your trunk. At picnic areas, keep all food within arm's reach.
- Do not stop or park on any plants. Along roadsides, park only in designated paved turnouts and pull off the road completely.
- During days of heavy traffic, park rangers may temporarily divert you away from certain parking lots.