Kings Canyon, a must see it is just north of Sequoia National Park and and both combine to make the Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Park. The park is much quieter than Zion NP and we were able to arrive at 13:00 on a Friday evening and have the pick of the campsites. We stayed at the Sentinel campground which is near the visitor centre and a short walk to Cedar Grove which has a restaurant, market, laundrette, showers and telephones as well as a hotel. Sentinel has flushing toilets and each site has a bear box to store your food and any scented items.
It is not possible to visit Kings Canyon without a car, there is no public transport of any kind to the park and no internal shuttle service. This is disappointing as we had to rent a car for the week and most of the time it was parked at the campsite. Hopefully Sequoia will extend their shuttle service up north to Kings Canyon but I don’t expect this to happen any time soon.
So what did we do and whats to see. One of the best hikes is up to Mist Falls, this a 8.5 mile (13.5km) round trip. The trial follows the river up to the falls and most is shaded which makes it easier in the summer. Watch out for rattle snakes on the trial we met one but the rangers have warned that due to the extremely dry conditions and low snow fall this year their numbers have increased. If you continue on the trial it brings you to paradise valley which I heard is spectacular but we didn’t get to make it this time.
Zumwalt Meadows is also a nice short easy walk, about 1.5 miles (2.5km) the trail follows the perimeter of the meadow with great views of the granite cliffs and river.