What is the Grove of Titans?

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

The Grove of Titans is a stand of coast redwoods near Crescent City, California. The trees in the Grove of Titans are believed to be among the largest redwoods in the world, making them among the world's largest living organisms. The location of this grove of trees is a closely-guarded secret known to only a handful of biologists, many of whom have pledged to keep the site secret due to concerns about the potential for environmental damage which could be caused by curious visitors.

The Grove of Titans is in Crescent City, in Northern California.
The Grove of Titans is in Crescent City, in Northern California.

Although the precise location of the Grove of Titans isn't known, biologists have disclosed the fact that it is within the bounds of Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park. The site was discovered in 1998 by Steve Sillett and Michael Taylor, and some biologists use the discovery to illustrate the fact that new discoveries in the sciences are always right around the corner. The dense forest of the park hid the Grove of Titans quite effectively for quite some time, although evidence in the grove suggests that it may have been known to people in the 1940s.

The Grove of the Titans is believed to be home to some of the largest redwoods in the world.
The Grove of the Titans is believed to be home to some of the largest redwoods in the world.

Lost Monarch, one of the trees in the grove, is believed to be the largest coast redwood in the world, in terms of sheer volume. In addition to Lost Monarch, the grove also hosts the Del Norte Titan, Aragorn, Aldebaran, and Sacajawea, in addition to the Screaming Titans, a pair of trees with intertwined trunks. The Grove of Titans also harbors a number of sword ferns, many of which grow on the trunks of the trees in addition to the ground.

This grove has been termed important biologically because of the sheer size of the trees, and because of the fact that it has been relatively undisturbed. As often happens in natural redwood forests, the Grove of Titans actually consists of a ring of trees surrounding an open meadow, with various shrubs in addition to the sword ferns living on the understory, the area of the ground below the canopy of the trees.

Many people want to visit the Grove of Titans once they have heard about it, and Jedediah Smith has experienced an uptick in visitors since 1998. However, biologists caution that a large amount of foot traffic could compromise the area, damaging the understory and making it difficult to treat the Grove of Titans as a pristine environment. The grove is also very difficult to reach, and it can be easy to get lost in the thick forest of the park, so they recommend that inexperienced individuals avoid traveling in the park alone, as they may become disoriented and lost.

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a wiseGEEK researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

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Discussion Comments

anon21365

The article says that just a handful of botanists know the location, but there is a webpage.

And the albums for it show an arborist and other people, independently, in the Grove of Titans. Proof that the grove is not known to merely a handful of botanists. These non-botanists are standing next to Lost Monarch, Screaming Titans and Del Norte Titan. The writer of the webpage, implies that several hundred people have passed through the groves over the years. Signed, Redwood Coast Hiker

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