Sequoia National Park, California
Moro Rock, a smooth granite dome protruding from the depths of Sequoia National Park’s Giant Forest Plateau, has provided thousands of hikers with amazing panoramic views of the Keweah River Gorge, the Great Western Divide, and of the jagged spires of Castle Rocks.
To count yourself among the hikers lucky enough to reach the summit of this 6,725-foot rock fin, make your way along the General’s Highway to Crescent Meadow Road—the Moro Rock turnoff is located at the southern end of the drive.
From the parking area, begin climbing south on Moro Rock—twisting and turning along the precipitous granite steps that cling to the edges of the monolith. Nearly 400 steps, 380 to be exact, interspersed with rock slab ramps and landings lined with metal railings aid the hiker on their climb to the summit—of all the hikes in the Giant Forest, this short climb to the top should not be missed.
The hike begins in a forest of incense cedar, white fir, and sugar pine, but soon reaches a series of vantage points with spectacular views—Mineral King with the jagged spire of Sawtooth Peak, the snow-capped mountains of the Great Western Divide, the serpentine Generals Highway, and the Middle Fork and Marble Fork of the Keweah River are all sights to behold as you make your way to the top.
Climbing past, through, and around massive overhanging rocks and narrow passageways, you soon find yourself taking in the wondrous view from the summit—a 360-degree view of Sequoia’s grandeur.
The summit is enclosed by railings and the park has provided interpretive signs that display maps of the surrounding peaks and valleys—savor the view and then return along the same route.