Parts of Generals Highway, other areas in Sequoia/Kings Canyon parks closed

Wuksachi Lodge in Sequoia National Park hosts Telescope Tuesdays.
Wuksachi Lodge in Sequoia National Park hosts Telescope Tuesdays.

The Generals Highway, the road to General Grant Tree and other parts of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks were closed Monday evening because of unsafe conditions, offiicals announced.

The closures began at 6 p.m. Monday, the park announced in a news release, and are likely to last as long as the federal government shutdown.

According to the release, overflowing trash, roadway congestion and accidents and icy roadways contributed to the call to close the Generals Highway at Hospital Rock in Sequoia National Park extending through Giant Forest and Lodgepole to Lost Grove. The closure includes concession facilities including Wuksachi Lodge.

Officials said motorists were experiencing delays up to three hours.

In Grant Grove in Kings Canyon National park, officials closed the road to General Grant Tree, the Big Stump Picnic Area and Azalea Campground. Officials said without the usual winter minimal sanding done by park staff, the Grant Tree Trail had become slick, causing many visitors to fall and at least one injury.

The Grant Village will remain open, as will Highway 180 for through traffic to Princess Campground and Montecito Sequoia Lodge.

For Wuksachi Lodge reservation information go to www.visitsequoia.com.

For current road conditions and weather information, call 559-565-3341.