Ishi Giant - Former World's 14th Largest Tree
Height: 228.00 ft (69.49 m) Elevation: 6,395 ft (1,949 m) GPS Latitude: 36.76143
Volume: 39,210 ft3 (1,110 m3) Creek: Kennedy Creek GPS Longitude: -118.81062
Width: 25.86 ft (7.88 m) Grove: Kennedy Grove Discovery Date: 1993
Age: Park: Giant Sequoia NM Discovered By: Dwight M. Willard

Notes: Before the 2015 Rough Fire, Ishi Giant was the world's 14th largest tree, the 13th largest giant redwood, the 4th largest tree in Giant Sequoia National Monument, and the largest tree in Kennedy Grove. The trunk lost significant volume and over 27 ft (8 m) in height after it burned, and, pending new volume estimates, Ishi Giant no longer ranks among the 30 largest giant redwoods.

Naturalist Dwight M. Willard discovered Ishi Giant in 1993, nearly a century after most colossal giant redwoods had been discovered, and named the tree to honor Ishi, the last surviving Yahi Yana tribesman, once considered the last wild Indian in America. Naturalist Wendell D. Flint suggested Willard name the tree Calavera (Spanish for skull) after the men discovered a human skull (the only remnants of two teenagers who had vanished in the grove sometime earlier) beside the tree later that same year. Willard chose the name Ishi Giant instead. Flint noted carvings on the trunk which dated back to 1940.

Drive: Ishi Giant is is 211 mi (340 km) southeast of San Francisco near Fresno.

Northbound: From U.S. Interstate 5 North, transfer to California State Route 99 North toward Bakersfield. Drive north 97 mi (156 km) on California State Route 99 and transfer to California State Route 198 East toward Visalia. Drive east 82 mi (132 km) on California State Route 198 (Generals Highway) and turn right/north onto Forest Service Road 13S09 (Ten Mile Road) toward Quail Flat and Hume Lake.

Southbound: From U.S. Interstate 5 South in Sacramento, transfer to U.S. Highway 50 East toward South Lake Tahoe. Drive east 1.7 mi (2.7 km) on U.S. Highway 50 and transfer to California State Highway 99 South. Near Fresno, transfer to California State Route 180 East. Drive east 56 mi (90 km) on California State Route 180 and turn right onto California State Route 198 West. Drive south 4 mi (6 km) on California State Route 198 (Generals Highway) and turn left/north onto Forest Service Road 13S09 (Ten Mile Road) toward Quail Flat and Hume Lake.

Drive north 225 ft (68 m) on Forest Service Road 13S09 (Ten Mile Road) and veer right onto Forest Service Road 14S02 (Burton Road) toward Burton Meadow. Drive northeast 8.3 mi (13.4 km) on Forest Service Road 14S02 (Burton Road), past the intersections with Forest Service Roads 13S26 and 13S04, and turn left onto Forest Service Road 13S23 (Little Boulder Road) toward Boulder Creek. Drive northeast 2.3 mi (3.7 km) on Forest Service Road 13S23 (Little Boulder Road), past the intersection with Forest Service Road 13S53, to the parking spot at Little Boulder Grove Trailhead (East), located at 36.75723 -118.80267, on the left/west side of the road.

Hike: GPS-assisted navigation is recommended for this hike. From the trailhead, hike northwest/downhill 0.2 mi (0.3 km) off-trail, across Forest Service Road 13S23E, to Little Boulder Creek. Cross the creek and, using a GPS device, hike northwest 0.3 mi (0.5 km), over a ridge, to Ishi Giant.

Alternate Route: If you are unable to cross Little Boulder Creek on foot, take this alternate, longer route to Ishi Giant. Park near the intersection of Forest Service Roads 13S23 (Little Boulder Road) and 13S53 (Boulder Grove Road) and walk north 2 mi (3 km) on Forest Service Road 13S53 (Boulder Grove Road), past Little Boulder Grove Trailhead (West) and two (1, 2) perennial mud patches, to the end of the road. If you have a high-clearance truck or SUV capable of navigating this narrow, winding, muddy road, drive north 2 mi (3 km) on Forest Service Road 13S53 (Boulder Grove Road) instead and park at the end of the road. From the end of the road, hike northeast 0.6 mi (1.0 km) off-trail to Ishi Giant.

Rating: Moderate One-Way Distance: 0.5 mi (0.8 km) Ascent: 308 ft (94 m)
Time: 30 min Off-Trail: 0.5 mi (0.8 km) Descent: 555 ft (169 m)
Ishi Giant Tree Hike Map

View Ishi Giant Tree location in Google Maps

Panoramas: Click panoramas to take a virtual tour of Ishi Giant Tree

Photos: Pictures of Ishi Giant Tree taken from different sides

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