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Pioneer Cabin Tree With Tunnel Toppled by Storm at Calaveras State Park

Image: Pioneer Cabin Tree With Tunnel Toppled by Storm at Calaveras State Park

The Pioneer Cabin tree, an iconic sequoia in Calaveras Big Trees State Park, toppled during a storm Sunday. (Wikimedia Commons)

By    |   Tuesday, 10 Jan 2017 05:37 AM

Calaveras Big Trees State Park suffered a huge loss when a strong winter storm that blew through Northern California toppled the iconic sequoia "tunnel tree" called the Pioneer Cabin tree.

The tree had been a tourist attraction since a tunnel was carved into its large base about 137 years ago, the Los Angeles Times reported. Visitors used to be able to drive through the tunnel, but the tree had only recently been open to hikers along a 1.5-mile loop.

The Calaveras Big Tree Association posted pictures of the fallen tree on Facebook Sunday.

The sequoias at the state park are estimated to be more than 1,000 years old, according to the Los Angeles Times.

SFGate.com wrote that it was not immediately known why the tree fell. Jim Allday, a volunteer at the park, told SFGate.com that the tree fell about 2 p.m. Sunday and shattered when it hit the ground.

"When I went out there (Sunday afternoon), the trail was literally a river, the trail is washed out," Allday told SFGate.com. "I could see the tree on the ground, it looked like it was lying in a pond or lake with a river running through it."

Giant sequoias (Sequoiadendron giganteum) are the biggest trees on Earth and can grow to heights of nearly 300 feet, according to Scientific American. The sequoia trunks can span more than 30 feet, Scientific American noted.

The recent swing of winter storms through California have brought 20 feet of new snow to Mammoth Mountain and needed rain other areas of drought-stricken California, reported the Los Angeles Times.

Numerous people shared their sadness for the fallen tree on social media.

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Calaveras Big Trees State Park suffered a huge loss when a strong winter storm that blew through Northern California toppled the iconic sequoia tunnel tree called the Pioneer Cabin tree.
pioneer cabin, tree, calaveras big trees state park
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2017-37-10
Tuesday, 10 Jan 2017 05:37 AM
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