My favorite characters throughout all of iterature are the Ents. For those not as fluent in geek, the Ents are a race of ancient tree. . . people. To those more versed in geek lingo, I'm sorry for the lame laman definition.  For the las few years two items have loomed large on my bucket list, The coastal Redwoods, and the Sequoia's. On our trip north this year we traveled up the California coast, and I finally got to tick them off my list. 

Walking through the Coastal Redwoods is like traveling to prehistory. The trees feel so ancient, and so removed from everything earthly. It's mystifying to think that some of these same trees were already a thousand years old when Christ was born. It's no wonder that Tolkeins best, in my opinion, characters are trees. I could almost hear Ent voices as I walked among the tall trunks, "Don't be so hasty." There is a quietness there though that permeates age, it's almost sacred. My children felt it, and were drawn to whisper lest their voices dispel the wind whispered wisdom of the ancients. 

The energy of the Sequoia groves was different though. They feel younger, though they are not. There is volotility, and youth that may have something to do with the fact that there really are so many young trees around. We had the chance to discuss with one ranger the benifits of prescribed burns. It seems counter-intuitive, but scientists have found that sequoyas rings are larger the year after a burn than at other times, and it doesn't have anything to do with an increase of water, but rather a lack of competition. If you are interested in learning more, you should read this article about all the benefits of prescribed burns.

I would highly recommend both parks to anyone who loves the outdoors, they are spectacular. I also think it's better to see them one after the other to see the differences in both parks, Nature is fabulous!