Sequoia National Park Issues River Safety Warning Following Recent Incidents

by Alice

The National Park Service (NPS) has issued a safety warning for visitors to Sequoia National Park, urging them to exercise caution around the park’s rivers following recent incidents.

The alert, issued over the weekend, advises travelers to “exercise heightened caution” and avoid the park’s rivers due to significant risks posed by swift water and slick granite rocks. The NPS emphasized that even smaller rivers can have strong currents capable of quickly overpowering experienced swimmers, despite appearing calm.


Additionally, the NPS highlighted the danger of slippery rocks near the rivers, which can lead to accidental falls into the fast-moving water.


“We want everyone to have a safe and enjoyable experience at Sequoia National Park,” said Deputy Chief Ranger Dave Fox in a statement. “By staying out of the rivers and maintaining a safe distance from the riverbank, visitors can prevent life-threatening accidents and ensure a fun visit for all.”


This warning follows two recent swift water rescues at the Marble Fork of the Kaweah River.

Sequoia National Park, along with the adjacent Kings Canyon National Park, boasts approximately 2,600 miles of rivers and streams, according to the NPS. The parks also feature nearly 3,200 lakes and ponds with designated swimming areas where visitors can camp, fish, hike, and more.

Beyond its water features, Sequoia National Park is renowned for its Giant Forest, home to the famous 2,000-year-old General Sherman tree. The park has also faced natural threats, such as the wildfires in 2021, which led firefighters to wrap the massive tree in aluminum-based burn-resistant material for protection.

In addition to river safety, the NPS recommended that visitors take precautions on hot days by utilizing shaded areas, such as under the canopy of the massive trees, carrying cooling towels or bandanas, and refilling reusable water bottles at park water stations to stay hydrated.



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