Today giant sequoia grows in only 75 scattered groves in California, where it earns its name as "the sentential of the Sierra." These groves exist in a 260 mile stretch of the Sierra Nevada mountains, typically from 4,500 to 7,500 ft. in elevation. In total there are only 35,600 acres of forest where giant sequoias make their home. All such groves have undoubtedly been discovered, and were it not for recent planting efforts, it is unlikely that any more would have ever become established. The lack of evidence of these trees elsewhere in the Sierra suggest that the distribution of the bigtrees has been relatively unchanged since the most recent retreat of the glaciers. Fortunately most of the giant sequoia groves are now protected on both public and private land, hopefully assuring their permanence in their delicate mountain ecosystem.