The new world record for for tallest standing tree has been set at just over 378 feet. The ancient Coast Redwood, named Hyperion by researchers, stands amongst other giants on a steep slope in Redwood National Park. The area of forest where the trees stand was added to the park only 30 years ago, narrowly avoiding logging.
"They aren't all that far from an old clear-cut," said biology professor George Koch. "Basically, they were almost nuked. The fact that they weren't is amazing."
And while it may be the world's tallest tree at the moment -- providing another unmeasured giant doesn't prove taller or its top doesn't topple in a storm -- it's not even close to the size of some of the towering redwoods of the North Coast's early logging years. One redwood felled in Elk River in 1886 was 424 feet tall. writes John Driscoll of the Eureka Times-Standard.
Timber companies like Maxxam's Pacific Lumber continue to log giant Redwoods to this day. These unprotected groves are now few and far between. Who knows what natural wonders and global treasures are lost every year to the exploitation and plundering of the ancient Redwood forests?