There is something absolutely magical about walking through an old forest. You can look up at the trees and basically trace the years and passage of time. Most people don’t get out to see the woods unless they are en route to a fishing trip or up for that annual Maine rafting trip (okay, that’s just us). We decided to pull together a list that would inform you as well as amaze you all while bringing some tree magic back into your life. Listed below are 11 of the world’s most ancient trees as of 2016. Look for some cheap rental cars and pay these majestic living beings a visit!
Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi – 2,302 Years Old.
The simple truth is that all great trees have a story to tell but the majority of them just aren’t speaking in our language. The Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi opens up our list of ancient trees in style with a story that is simply unforgettable. This Sacred Fig tree is currently in the Mahamewna Gardens in Sri Lanka and it is said to be grown from a sapling pulled from the tree under which Lord Buddha found Enlightenment. The tree is so revered that the government is doing everything they can to protect it including the banning of construction within a 500 meter radius of the ancient life form.
The President – 3,200 Years Old.
We head back to the United States now to set our eyes on the President tree which is located in the Sequoia National park in Visalia, California. This isn’t the tallest sequoia tree on the planet and it honestly isn’t even the most impressive tree on our list. Still, the age of this mighty sequoia needs to be revered. It was named after President Warren G. Harding back in 1923 and it stands at an incredible 247 feet in height.
Fortingall Yew – 2,000 – 5,000 Years Old.
While we can’t put an exact date on the age of the Fortingall yew we can give you some interesting backstory. You might want to look for a car rental cheap in Scotland if you plan to visit it as you will have to head way out to the village Fortingall, located in Perthshire. The Fortingall Yew is located in a church courtyard and it is largely believed to be the oldest tree in all of Britain. The earliest reference to the tree in writing, which is amazing that it was mentioned at all, can be dated back to 1769. Studies suggest that the tree could be as old as 5,000 years or as young as 2,000 years.
Jomon Sugi – 2,170 – 7,200 Years Old.
Now we are jumping over to Japan to take revel in the Jomon Sugi, one of the oldest trees in all of Japan. The Jomon Sugi is located on the highest peak of the Yakushima ridge at nearly 4,300 feet above sea level. You can hike right up to this tree and see it in person though you might not be completely blown away at first sight. The tree only stands at 83 feet tall and has fallen victim to vandals despite the designation of it as being on a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Mother of the Forest -2,520 Years Old.
Perhaps in a symbolic gesture to the current state of world affairs, the Mother of the Forest is dead at 2,520 years old. Before dying, this tree stood up to 321 feet into the air with 90 feet of girth at ground level. Being one of the largest sequoias to grow in the valley made it an obvious target for weather. The remains of this once great tree are located in the Calaveras Grove of Big Trees in California. You can visit the hull by hiking through the North Grove. What’s left of the trunk still stands at over 100 feet in height.
Prometheus – 4,844 Years Old.
Prometheus was once the oldest living non clonal organism in the world. Located in Wheeler Park in Nevada, Promethus has since been cut down. Prometheus is a bristlecone pine, much like another tree on this list, and it stood for thousands of years until a grad student from the US Forest Service decided to cut it down for a project. This terrible decision eventually put the remains in the hands of Donald Rusk Currey who sampled the tree and found out its ultimate age: 4,844 years old. Now the trees remains are gone forever.
Methusela – 4,847 Years Old.
Methusale is one of the oldest trees that you can find in the White Mountains,, located in Inyo County of Eastern California. The tree currently resides in the Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest in its own specially named grove: Methusaleh grove. For a long time this was known as the oldest individual tree on the planet until it was usurped in 2013. Still, you’ll find that bristlecone pine trees are particularly well represented on this list.
Old Hara – 5,065 Years Old.
Old Hara is a relative newcomer to this list thanks to its being discovered in 2012. This is one of the oldest non cloned trees in all of the world and it definitely looks like it has carried its years on its shoulders. Old Hara is a bristlecone pine tree that shows off a beautiful but twisted trunk and vibrant green life where it still sprouts. If this tree were a bike we would be calling a motorcycle injury lawyer right about now — it seriously is starting to look pretty rough!
Old Huon Pine – 3,000 to 10,000 Years Old.
This striking little tree can be found in Tasmania, Australia on Mount read. The Old Huon Pine sits inside of a clonal grove that has trees dating back almost 10,000 years. The majority of the trees in the grove, however, simply sit at around 3,000 or so years old. Still, this is an incredible show of life for trees that don’t look like they could endure another heavy storm. Still, they must be strong beneath the soil to live on for this long.
Sarv-e Abarkuh – 5,200 Years Old.
The Sarv-e Abarkuh is a Cupressus tree located in the Yazd Province in Iran. This tree has been certified and protected by the Cultural Heritage Organization of Iran and for good reason. Considered a natural monument and a tourist attraction, this gorgeous tree is the oldest of its type with an estimated age of nearly 5,200 years old. This is a towering tree that you simply must visit if you find your way to that part of the world. The fact that it looms over everything makes it as much a natural wonder as any other living organism on this planet.
Pando – 80,000 Years Old.
Alright, so we are cheating a little bit in order to fit in this truly prolific aspen grove. Located in the Fishlake National Forest in Utah, the Pando Grove covers over 107 acres with 47,000 offshooting stems. This is the heaviest living organism on the planet when you take its cumulative weight into account. This is the oldest tree system in the world and also the heaviest tree system in the world. While not an individual tree, there is something to be said for the enduring life that this grove is going through in its years when so much has changed across the planet. We highly suggest taking a trip tot he beautiful Fishlake National Forest in order to take in these beauties first hand and to see if you can feel the age seeping through the ground or the gentle whisper of their words in the wind.