After logging the old growth forest, this 14-foot diameter giant redwood still stood. Often referred to as the “Grandmother Tree,” it is estimated to be 1800 to 2000 years old. Although the coast redwood is the tallest living thing in the world, this particular tree is wider than it is tall and therefore does not tower over the forest canopy.
From the Lake take a left at the Vineyard Trail and continue across Asbury Creek until you reach the three-way intersection at Fern Lake Trail. Take the small center trail at the picnic table and hitching posts to find the Grandmother Tree. For a refreshing view, walk onward using your park map to nearby Fern Lake or the Historic Orchard.
Distance, Category and Difficulty
- Round trip about 4 miles, moderate.
- Exposure: Mostly shady.
- Trail traffic: Moderate. Horses, bikes, and hikers; busier on weekends. Dogs are not allowed on any back-country trails in the Park.
- Trail surfaces: Some erosion and roots; some muddy areas.
- Hiking time: 2 hours.
- Features: Picnic tables and horse tie-ups are at the intersection of Vineyard Trail and Fern Lake Trail. The center narrow trail leads to a shady bench near the ancient tree, a tranquil spot for rest and reflection.