No matter how big you are, you can still fall. Trees are no stranger to toppling over thanks to weakened soil or raging winds. If you have trees on your property you want to make sure they they are well supported so that a sudden rainstorm or flash flood won’t tip them over: potentially into your house. Just as all beginnings must have an end, the ‘death’ of the Pioneer Cabin tree came as a shock to everyone:

Fans are mourning a giant sequoia in California that’s famous for a “drive-thru” hole carved into its trunk after a massive storm toppled the mighty tree.

The tree shattered when it went down Sunday, Calaveras Big Trees State Park volunteer Jim Allday said.

“It was majestic,” he said. “Now it’s basically a pile of rubble.”

A tunnel was carved into the tree’s trunk in the 1880s to allow tourists to pass through, though it weakened the giant. The tunnel had allowed cars to pass, but only pedestrians could crossed in recent decades.

Generations of locals and tourists have visited the tree for centuries, posing for photos and carving their names into it. Many of them took to social media Sunday and Monday, posting their memories of the tree.

“It’s kind of like someone in the family has died,” said Joyce Brown, a 65-year-old retired middle school teacher who has been visiting the tree since she was 12 and owns a cabin in nearby Arnold.

Brown said four generations of her family spent countless hours at the tree and often took out-of-town visitors there, some from as far away as Turkey.

“Everyone who went there was shocked at how big a tree could be,” she said. “As a child you think you had come to a land of giants, that there must be giant people and giant animals living there because of the diameter of these trees.”

Sumner Crawford remembers every detail of his first visit to the tree as a kid in the early 1990s.

“I remember I was walking through the tree and thinking, ‘I’m inside of the tree right now!’” he said. “It was madness.”

He was stunned by the sequoia’s size – when his family of four tried to join hands around the tree they discovered they couldn’t even come close.


It is sad to see the end of an era, a legend. For a tree that has lived for well over a hundred years and stood the test of time to be downed by a storm is bittersweet. How many storms has this massive beast stood against before? However that last one was it’s undoing. Now it’s time for the biggest job of all: cleanup. Trying to clean up in the wake of a storm, not to mention the shattered remains of a giant, is a daunting task. Tree removal is serious business. If you find yourself in need, you’ll be happy to know we do that too: All Clear Tree Service continues to provide San Diego County with by far the best, most consistent tree services available. Our help is only a phone call away, pretty much any time.

The article Even The Mighty Fall was first seen on The All Clear Tree Service Blog