Worth the Drive
Our daily look at nearby getaways

Giants Lurk Outside Your Lodge

Take an eerie trip to the Sequoia National Park.

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Spooky Sequoias

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Spend Halloween, or at least some of October, in the shadow of the sequoias.

THE FOREST AT NIGHT: There's a reason so many scary movies take place in the woods: owls chirp, the undergrowth rustles, trees sway and form shadows. Of course, we needn't go looking for mysteries in the forest; the forest itself is the character, and, in a certain Sierra-based national park? The starring roles are filled by some of the largest living things on the planet.

We're talking about the sequoias, of course, which would naturally have to play giants in any spooky movie (though we see the trees as very gentle, peace-bringing giants, which may not bode well for the "scary" part of our scary flick). Sequoia National Park is highly atmospheric year-round, but, come October, before the snows, when the shadows get longer and night deepens earlier? Yeah, it is cinematic, and we're not even talking in spooky movie terms. The people overseeing the park understand how autumn and the magnificent trees work well in concert; with that in mind, there are several eerie and fun events ahead.

LIKE... Crystal Cave Halloween Tours get subterranean over the final weekend of October. There's also a haunted lantern tour at the General Sherman -- otherwise known as "the largest tree on earth" -- and pumpkin carving at Wuksachi Lodge on Friday, Oct. 26. Oh, and a kids' party, too, at the Wuksachi, on Saturday, Oct. 20. Can we also add that the full moon will come close to Halloween -- it's on Oct. 29 -- meaning a late October stay among the sequoias will have a bit of lunar magic. For more haps at the Wuksachi, check out the lodge's site. And be sure to say hey to the General Sherman for us, if you go; trees don't come more epic on this particular planet. It's just truth, is all.

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