Going over the Sierra Nevada through Sequoia
I have 8 days in August to get from SF to Sequoia National Park/Kings Canyon and back again.I was thinking of taking the 99 south, stopping a few places, staying in the park for a night or two, and then trying to get across the mountains to the 395 (one of my all-time faves).I can't tell from my maps if it's doable or will take 50 hours or what. On my map the road is shown as originating around California Hot Springs (southern part of Sequoia) and going over SHerman pass. Does anyone know?
There is no way across the Sierras from Sequoia (unless you intend to hike it !). The road you identified does go from California Hot Springs over the Sierras but California Hot Springs is about 100 miles south (by road) of Sequoia.
Actually, you can drive over the Sierras on that road!!!!!!!
The road that goes over Sherman Pass is known as Kennedy Meadows Road east of the pass and Sherman Pass Road on the west side (also county road-41) and it does cross the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range on the southern end of the Sequoia National Monument. After intersecting with Nine Mile Road on the eastern side of the Sierras you will reach US-395 a couple of miles south of Little Lake.
It is not a road for the faint of heart -- radical switchbacks and rather amazing cliffside views but it would surely make any roadtrip memorable. Last August, heavy rainstorms washed out several sections of the roadway and I am not sure of the current status of the route.
Before driving it, I would suggest calling the Kernville Ranger Station at (760) 376-3781 or the Lake Isabella Visitor Center at (760) 379-5646 and see what the current conditions are like.
I would LOVE TO KNOW what the road is like in 2004. If you go, please write and let us know!
my kind of road! I'll have to get over there soon!
Any updates on this???
Im going to be staying in the Sequoia NP in late September and want to get to Las Vegas over two days. Ive got a convertible Mustang so doing the tourist thing with my girlfriend (and I know this car is meant to be a pain to drive). Anyway I wanted to stay at Long Pines and take the 190 through Death Valley towards Vegas (I hear good things about it), but to get to Long Pines I'd like to take a fun scenic route, and stumbled across this county road 41 (Kennedy Meadows Road east of the pass and Sherman Pass Road on the west side).
So is it doable? Does anyone even have an idea how long this journey might take? Ive looked on multimap which says it will be about an hour longer than taking the southerly route via Lake Isabella, but is it worth it?
Thanks for any and all your help!
This is a nice drive, and its all paved so you shouldn't have any problems making the trip in a Mustang. I've taken it in a sedan and there were no problem spots that I recall.
The total time to travel would depend upon where you are considering your starting point. Remember, that this highway starts in the Sequoia National Monument, which itself is a couple hours of driving from the National Park, and does require a trip back into the Central Valley.
Its been a number of years since I've made the trip, but I seem to remember that the drive taking about 4 hours from the Kern River Highway back out to US-395. The whole trip starting from Sequoia National Park to Death Valley via this route I'd think would take a good 12 hours, if not more.
Great thanks for the speedy response! We're staying about an hours drive from Three Rivers entrance into the NP on the Generals Highway. Google maps thinks its 220miles to Lone Pine on US-395 which is where we planned to stay the night before heading on to LV on 190 through Death Valley. Would you still think its 12 hours from Sequoia NP to Long Pine using this paved back road? I hope not!
Thanks for your time by the way (and to everyones responses that have helped us plan out trip!)
I would certainly plan for this to be a very full and long day on the road. It might not take 12 hours (although that's certainly possible if you start making a few stops), but I'd say 8-10 hours would be most likely depending upon your exact routing. Remember, while its only 220 miles or so, more than half of it is on small mountain roads with lots of curves and switch backs. 30 mph will be your top speed for a very large percentage of this trip.
Also remember you'll need to fill up your tank before you start heading back up into the mountains - your available stops for fuel here will be very few and far between.