King’s Canyon National Park, California – Impressive landscape

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King's Canyon National Park, CaliforniaWhen I mention King’s Canyon National Park, quite a few people still ask where it is. This is very different than when talking about Yosemite or Sequoia National Parks because everyone knows about these two places. Even though King’s Canyon is a lot less popular, it is a great place to visit and just like Sequoia, it is a backpacker and hiker’s paradise.

King’s Canyon National Park is the best California national park to visit during a national holiday simply because people don’t know much about it. Whereas in Sequoia and Yosemite you will find lots and lots of people on holidays, in King’s Canyon you will have plenty of room to breathe even on a July 4th week.

    Series: California’s National Parks.

  1. 5 best day hikes in Yosemite National Park
  2. 1 amazing week in Yosemite National Park
  3. Local expert recommends best attractions in Yosemite National Park
  4. Backpacking in Sequoia National Park
  5. Backpacking in King’s Canyon National Park
  6. 7 places to see the Redwoods National & State Park
  7. 2 great family hikes in Pinnacles National Park

My favorite things to see and do at King’s Canyon National Park

  • See more pictures from King’s Canyon National Park
  • If you can hike up to Kennedy Pass, you will not be disappointed by the views.
  • Beware of mosquitoes in June and July. They are worse than the bears. They will hunt you down and not allow you to rest until you get inside your tent. Bring lots of bug repellent…the expensive stuff, cause only the real stuff really works :) No kidding !

Forests and rocks are the landscape in King’s Canyon National Park.

King’s Canyon is typical of the High Sierra mountains…it’s filled with forests but only up to a point. If you go past that point, the trees are very rare and the rock starts to dominate the landscape.

Burned out tree trunks have fallen on new grass in Kings Canyon National Park, California.
Kings Canyon National Park, California - Burned out tree trunks have fallen on new grass.
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Fires are a common occurrence in King’s Canyon National Park, California

Fires do lots of damage in the High Sierra mountains. However, the park rangers don’t see it as damage anymore and they only try to contain the fires rather than putting them out. This way there lots of natural fertilizer left in the wake of a fire. I don’t believe they would be able to put the fires out anyway…this place is way to big :)

Lonely tree that has survived a recent fire in King’s Canyon National Park, California.
King's Canyon National Park, California- Lonely tree that has survived a recent fire.
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Hot to get to King’s Canyon National Park

Just like getting to Yosemite National Park, you can easily find directions to King’s Canyon National Park. King’s Canyon is most of the time associated with Sequoia National Park because they’re right next to each other. I love driving to King’s Canyon and Yosemite…once you get in the mountain areas the drive is just spectacular. Try not to hurry too much, just enjoy the drive and the vistas…and stop once in a while.

Map of King’s Canyon National Park and surrounding area.

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My best tips for visiting King’s Canyon National Park

You must read the official King’s Canyon National Park website. It will give you up to date information about road and trail status.

Highway 180 is the only access road to the park and it actually ends at Road’s End in the park. From the north end of Sequoia National Park it will take you about one hour of driving on a very windy but beautiful road.

Is it worth visiting King’s Canyon National Park?

Just a spectacular place for everyone! This place has something for everyone…for the avid backpacker and for a family with small children…there are lots of fun things to do.

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