Fallen Monarch: A Yosemite tree that dwarfs an entire mounted cavalry


Yosemite National Park, Facebook site:    About forty members of U.S. 6th Cavalry, Troop F, shown mounted on, or standing beside their horses, and lined up atop and beside the Fallen Monarch tree in the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias, Yosemite, 1899.

Yosemite National Park, Facebook site: About forty members of U.S. 6th Cavalry, Troop F, shown mounted on, or standing beside their horses, and lined up atop and beside the Fallen Monarch tree in the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias, Yosemite, 1899.

Giant sequoia trees can be found only in the United States, and only in or near the Sierra Mountains in California. 

How massive are they?  The tree above, with the 6th Cavalry’s F Troop posing on and around it with their horses, is 26 feet in diameter at its base, where it fell, and 285 feet long,   Redwood doesn’t rot like other woods.  The tree is still there, today, looking much like it did 115 years ago (Comments on Yosemite NP photo).

The Fallen Monarch, in Mariposa Grove, in 1907:

Fallen Monarch, Mariposa Grove of Yosemite NP, in 1907, with a stage coach and team of six horses posing on top.

Fallen Monarch, Mariposa Grove of Yosemite NP, in 1907, with a stage coach and team of six horses posing on top.

When did the tree fall?  Hundreds of years ago, perhaps?

More:

Yosemite NP Nature Notes 11: Big Trees

5 Responses to Fallen Monarch: A Yosemite tree that dwarfs an entire mounted cavalry

  1. […] of Sequoia’s felled giants, still remains resting on the forest floor in the General Grant Grove. The hulking, hollowed out tunnel of a tree has lived several lifetimes, once as a living breathing member of the forest, and another […]

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  2. Rattus Norvegicus says:

    I used to live near Big Basin and when there all the time. There is a small grove of old growth near the park headquarters, but most of the park is second growth. These trees are all Sequoia Sempervirens.

    The pictures of the “Fallen Monarch” really do not do justice to size and imposing nature of the Sequoia Gigantea of the middle altitude slopes of the western Sierra. It is a very humbling experience to walk through a place like the Mariposa Grove. I have seen it many times and my jaw never fails to drop in awe at the size and age of these trees.

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  3. onkelbob says:

    Yes it is a function of age, the density of the heart wood increases as the outer layers added on. Most second growth is less than a century old and does not have the same heart wood density of the older stuff. I don’t know if it rots as quickly as pine, but it is not as durable as the older stuff.
    BTW – if you are in the Ess Ef Bay Area, the place to visit is Big Basin State Park. They have some nice specimens of coastal redwoods near the park HQ and if you hike in, a real nice stand of redwood and douglas fir on Berry Creek.

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  4. Ed Darrell says:

    Is it the age, or something magic about second growth?

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  5. Pangolin says:

    Actually it’s only redwood that grew up in an old growth forest and is at least 100 years old when cut that doesn’t rot. Second growth redwood rots just as fast as pine does. That would be any redwood you see for sale in the U.S..

    Any logs of old growth redwood currently being cut are shipped to Japan where they are sold for about 5x what we would pay in the U.S..

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