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Great places in California to see Nature's fall colors
By CARY ORDWAY
Each year, Californians head for the mountains —that annual fall ritual that reminds residents of the Golden State that, in some parts of the world, trees do change their appearance with the seasons. The result is a kaleidoscope of fall colors for those willing to drive to the higher elevations.

Besides, fall means fewer crowds in the most popular parks, cooler days and crisp nights. So, whether you're just going up there to cool off or you're planning a trip to see the fall colors -- best done from mid-October through November—here are some of our favorite destinations:

Who wouldn't be impressed by the giant Sequoia trees you see throughout this famous park? The trees weigh as much as 2.7 million pounds, and some are more than 2,000 years old. Even their branches are as much as seven feet in diameter. Go in the fall and you'll also see the Cottonwoods and Aspen changing color as temperatures begin to plummet.

On our most recent trip to the park we stayed at the Wuksachi Village Lodge, right in the heart of the "action." Nearby are groves of the giant Sequoias as well as many trails, major attractions like the General Sherman Tree and park services and amenities. Lodgepole Village and the Market Center are close by for quick trips to the store.

With its well-appointed rooms, the lodge is quite an outpost. Here in the thick of the mountains you have a lodge that provides guest amenities such as televisions, refrigerators, phones and even computer ports. This is for people who love the feel of camping in the Great Outdoors, but who may have grown weary of roughing it in tents or no-frills cabins. The resort has a full dining room and lounge, so it really is like staying at a major hotel in the mountains.
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