Hill Engineering Blog

Hill Engineering meets Big Trees

Nothing beats the great outdoors, if you ask me. Well, maybe residual stress measurements, but that’s a different story. This summer, the Hill Engineering group drove down to Calaveras Big Trees State Park to take in the sights and sounds of nature, complete with campfire songs, S’mores, and a weekend filled with fun.

Established in 1931, Calaveras Big Trees State Park is home to over one thousand mature Giant Sequoias. Some notable ones are the Big Stump, which measures 25 feet in diameter at its base and was determined to be 1,244 years old when it was felled in 1853 and the Tunnel Tree, which fell in 2017 and was one of several drive-through trees in northern California.

Our group this year was 13 people strong plus two of our four-legged companions, Sunshine and Delta. The weekend weather was a little smoky from the California fires burning at the time, but the days were warm and the nights were clear and not too cold. Combined with all the shade the trees provided, the weather could not have been any more perfect.

Day time activities included hiking a few miles of the many trails in the park and hanging around the campsite, making friendship bracelets and bead animals. As the sun was on its way down, Hill Engineering’s Axes & Alloys made a special appearance and led the group in campfire songs, asking for audience participation with some percussion instruments. When it was finally dark, the flashlights came on and we experimented with long exposure photography (check out our attempt at making the Hill Engineering logo below).

Sadly, all mini-vacations must come to an end, but we are most definitely looking forward to our next camping trip. For now, it’s back to measuring residual stress.

Hill Engineering plays with long exposure photography

The group standing on the Big Stump