|Species||Coast redwood (Sequoia sempervirens)|
|Location||Leggett, California, US|
This article may lack focus or may be about more than one topic.(January 2017)
The Chandelier Tree in Drive-Thru Tree Park is a 276-foot (84 m) tall coast redwood tree in Leggett, California with a 6-foot (1.8 m) wide by 6-foot-9-inch (2.06 m) high hole cut through its base to allow a car to drive through. Its base measures 16 ft (4.9 m) diameter at breast height (chest-high). The sign claims 315 ft. high and 21 ft. wide, but a Certified Arborist experienced with tallest redwoods, using a laser rangefinder, measured the tree as 276 ft. high and 16 ft. diameter. The name "Chandelier Tree" comes from its unique limbs that resemble a chandelier. The limbs, which measure from 4 to 7 ft (1.2 to 2.1 m) in diameter, begin 100 ft (30 m) above the ground. The tree is believed to have been carved in the early 1930s by Charlie Underwood.
A vintage postcard of the Chandelier Tree was shown during the opening credits of National Lampoon's Vacation.
Other tunnel trees
A number of big trees in California had tunnels dug through them in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The tunnel allowed tourists to drive, bike, or walk through the tree. The tunneling inflicted severe damage to the health and strength of the trees. The tunnels were cut to stimulate automobile tourism; the cutters did not know or care about the profound damage they were inflicting on the trees. Because of the damaging effects of carving through trees, the trend of creating tunnel trees has long passed.
The two giant sequoia drive-through trees have both fallen:
- Wawona Tree fell in 1969 in Mariposa Grove, Yosemite National Park
- Pioneer Cabin Tree fell in 2017 in Calaveras Big Trees State Park
But two walk-through tunnel trees still stand:
- California Tunnel Tree in Mariposa Grove, Yosemite National Park. The California Tunnel Tree's passageway was dug in 1895 to allow horse-drawn stagecoaches to pass through the tree. Today, people can walk or bike through it.
- A dead tunnel tree in Tuolumne Grove, Yosemite National Park. The dead tunnel tree in Tuolumne Grove was the first standing sequoia to be tunneled.
- "Drive-Thru Tree Park". Retrieved 30 June 2013.
- "Just a few highlights of Drive-Thru Tree Park". Retrieved 16 June 2010.
- "Drive Through Redwoods. Drive Thru Redwood. Avenue of the Giants and Klamath. Leggett".
- "Chandelier Tree". Archived from the original on 30 June 2013. Retrieved 30 June 2013.
- "Where is the tree you can drive through?" (PDF). United States Forest Service. Retrieved January 10, 2017.
- Hilton, Spud (2016-06-17). "Original essays: Why they love the parks". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2017-01-09.
The iconic California Tunnel Tree, cut in 1895 to allow horse-drawn stages to pass through, at the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias in Yosemite National Park.
- "The Myth of the Tree You Can Drive Through". National Park Service. Retrieved 2017-01-10.
[The Wawona Tree] was the second standing sequoia to be tunneled (the first, a dead tree, still stands in the Tuolumne Grove in Yosemite).
- "Destination drive through trees". OhRanger.com. Retrieved January 9, 2017.