PROGRAM REGISTRATION: After you have your room assignment, come over to the Road Scholar table to register with the program staff and pick up your arrival packet that we'll review during our orientation session before dinner.
ORIENTATION: We'll have an overview of the program ahead and review the up-to-date schedule and any other administrative issues, and answer your questions. Please be aware that local circumstances may require adjusting program elements. In the event of changes, we will notify you as quickly as possible. We appreciate your understanding.
Our four day program includes hotel-based classes combined with 2 all day bus adventures through the giant grandeur of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, home to the world's largest trees which grow peacefully in valleys protected by immense mountains and deeply chiseled canyons.Dinner: Dinner at Wonder Valley Resort
Menus are contracted well in advance with a variety of dining facilities and are designed to offer balanced, healthy meals for the participants.
Since meals are served in a group setting, it is difficult to adjust to individual dietary requests. If you are unable to eat what is on the regular menu, a vegetarian alternative is available, if not already part of the menu.
As alternative meal arrangements have to be made in advance, please indicate your need for a vegetarian entree on the enclosed Participant Information Form.Evening: INTRODUCTIONS: Crossing Points: Getting to know your fellow participants.
Enjoy the remainder of the evening getting to know your fellow participants and discover what you share beyond a love of lifelong learning.Lodging: Wonder Valley Ranch Resort & Conference CenterMeals Included: Dinner
Our bus departs the hotel in the morning for an all-day field trip to Sequoia National Park.Our onboard guide will provide commentary as we drive to the park. Upon arrival, we will walk the General Sherman Tree Trail, a paved 1 mile trail (one-way) which descends some 200 feet. The trail is wide with a few staircases. In the cathedral-like Giant Forest stands the 275-foot-tall General Sherman giant sequoia tree, whose trunk weighs an estimated 1385 tons and whose circumference at the ground is nearly 203 ft. The General Sherman tree has the distinction of being the largest living tree in the world (in terms of volume) and is more than 2000 years old. The General Sherman tree was named in 1879 by a Civil War veteran.Lunch: A box lunch will be served in a nearby picnic area in the park.Afternoon: FIELD TRIP: Giant Forest Museum
Visit the Giant Forest Museum which features exhibits on giant sequoia ecology and the trees' relationship with man. In the entire world, sequoias grow naturally only on the west slope of the Sierra Nevada, between 5000-7000 ft of elevation.
You'll learn about sequoia ecology as you walk the Big Trees Trail, a 2/3 mile paved/boardwalked trail which circles Round Meadow.Dinner: Dinner at Wonder Valley ResortEvening: CLASS: "California Grizzlies"Lodging: Wonder Valley Ranch Resort & Conference CenterMeals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Our bus departs the hotel in the morning for an all-day field trip to Kings Canyon National Park. Our onboard guide will provide commentary as we drive to the park. After stopping at the Kings Canyon Visitor Center in Grant Grove Village, we will continue on to the General Grant Tree, one of the five largest living trees on earth. The trail to the General Grant Tree is a gently-graded, paved, one-third of a mile loop walk through the sequoia grove.Lunch: Drive down into Kings Canyon National Park and enjoy a boxed lunch in a picnic area.Afternoon: Depending upon group’s ability:
Walk the Zumwalt Meadow Trail, a mostly level, 1.5 mile long trail, which affords excellent views of the meandering Kings River, a lush meadow and the surrounding high granite cliffs including Grand Sentinel (8,518 ft.) and North Dome (8,717 ft.). This is one of the most scenic trails in Kings Canyon.
Or Stand at Muir's 'Pulpit', a wide flat rock of historical significance in the park’s modern day history on which John Muir delivered impassioned speeches about the Sierra and conservation. The walk to the Rock is 300 ft/10 minutes from the parking area at Road’s End, along the trail to Zumwalt Meadow.Dinner: Dinner at Wonder Valley ResortEvening: PERFORMANCE: An Evening with John Muir.
A live presentation of John Muir, the Scottish-born American naturalist, author, and early advocate for wilderness preservation in the United States. His letters, essays, and books telling of his adventures in nature, especially in the Sierra Nevada mountains of California, have been read by millions. His activism helped to save the Yosemite Valley, Sequoia National Park and other wilderness areas. The Sierra Club, which he founded, is now one of the most important conservation organizations in the United States.Lodging: Wonder Valley Ranch Resort & Conference CenterMeals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Fresno, CA 93710
Phone (559) 981-5500 or 800-788-0836
Visit this site to learn more about the region and view or download a Visitor Planning Guide which takes you through a seasonal tour of Fresno County and beyond. It's packed with information about the many attractions, sports and recreation, dining and lodging options available in the Fresno/Clovis/Sierras area.For additional information, visit: playfresno.org/