Tuolumne Grove of Giant Sequoias
NileGuide Expert tip:
Midweek during the school year there are often student groups in here; weekends are sometimes actually quieter.
This was the second sequoia grove that John Muir visited and the first to have a tunnel cut through one of the enormous tree trunks. In the early 1870's a wagon road was put through the Tuolumne Grove, and the tunnel tree was cut in 1878. The attraction of driving a carriage through a tree trunk proved a commercial success for the private toll road operators and shortly thereafter the more famous Tunnel Tree was cut in the Mariposa Grove.
Tuolumne Grove is just off the west end of the Tioga Road, almost half a mile from the gas station/store on the road into Yosemite Valley. The parking lot has toilets and some informative signage. It's about a mile walk down into the big trees, where a short trail loops through the grove. Save some energy for the walk back up to you car along the historic (paved) wagon road.
The grove is accessible all year, but you may want snowshoes in the winter.