Looking For Giants
By James Cruz
11 Apr 2012
Spending the day with Giants had become a dream since the end of last year as I sped across the sign that said, Yosemite on my way to San Francisco on a last trip before the arrival of the new year. I had seen few pictures of the giants, and I could hardly remember them. They had been only dreams, now they would become a reality.
My first destination in their search, a place around Isabella Lake, Kernville. A small strip of a town, on one or so roads. I didn't have to stop, I continued, looking for signs to tell me that I had found the road to my destination. I found a sign a dreadful one, "Trail of a 100 Giants closed" I felt my heart sink, How could I have come this far, and be denied the gift of seeing these trees. I continued on not believing in the warning sign. I saw the desolation around me as something beautiful yet frightening at the same time, how could people camp out here I wondered? There were hardly any cars, but that is what probably makes it special to be at. The wild and you, I was in my car, and still it felt wonderful.
The road was long, and it wasn't until the beginning of the end of the day that I made it to the end of the road. As I approached it, I found myself blocked by a thick blanket of snow and ice on the road. I would not be going up any further than this I thought, I would try anyways, but the attempt failed. As I tried to hit reverse, the car became lodged. I held in my panic as I tried again, the car was stuck, I stepped out of my car, kicked the ice away from beneath my car, and tires. I was able to get out, a close call indeed, I remembered the car crash that had happened in the same situation where no one knew where I was except I was a lot further from home this time. I was shaking and wondered if I would get to see those trees I so longed for.
I turned back with heavy heart the night was chasing after me, and I could not outrun it, I was caught in the middle of the night and exhaustion had set in, I hadn't slept well in a day or so, I drove and made it to town, after inquiry, the access to all the giants had been blocked by snow in Kernsville. The roads in Three Rivers was open, I went ahead and tried, but sleep deprivation made the trip and interesting one, An owl sweeping down and taking a mouse before flying in front of my windshield, mice running across the road I hoped I had not crushed them. Hallucinations of the road reflectors expanding, and crazy dreams, I sadly turned the car around miles from anywhere, I would drive back home. A crazy decision, fortunately a cheap hotel caught my eye and sleep came, time to make a decision the next day, I would continue onto three rivers, I would find the trees that eluded me the day before.
The Drive to three rivers proved to be long, time had sped up last night in a tired haze. I was glad I had slept, but not glad that I had turned back to do so. Still I went on, what I believe to be the Sierra Nevada, geography was never my strong point. As I passed orange trees and quiet streets, the thought of the giants waiting for me became too exciting. I drove next to three rivers and the lake just before it, I made it to the park. I drove up anxious to get to the giants, there was construction that was opened once an hour. The caravan that had gathered in front of me and I made it just in time for us to not need to wait that long. I was on my way to see General Sherman. As I entered the Giant Forest Grove I saw them, Trees of enormous girth, Trees taller than any I had ever seen. I separated from the group of people as soon as I found a way into the forest after visiting the enormous Sherman I took the trails. I walked along the path next to the trees, I began to really feel how small I was, and how short my time is. The trees offered perspective and I took it. I walked for 3 hours with the giants, Through snow, dirt and remains of trees I hiked.
After a day of travel, and finally reaching my destination I marveled at how beautiful these giants are. And how much longer they have been here than we have, The Sherman aged around 2,700 years stood there long before our cities have. The trees offer a view of what the forests looked like before we came. To stand next to these giants, was a dream now become a reality I drove back to Los Angeles to ponder what world I would visit next.