O. O. Denny Park has tallest tree in Seattle metro! — 253 FEET! Taller than Portland’s Balch Creek giant of 242 -244 ft!
Seattle one hundred years ago was a mecca of gigantic Douglas fir, for instance some giants in Ravenna park were touted as standing 300 ft, even almost 400 feet high and 10 to 15 ft diameter! Sadly, there are very few trees in Seattle’s parks that even reach 200 feet. In fact, based on my “Google earth” arm chair amateur analysis, Portland and its metro have alot more 200+ foot tall trees, thanks mostly to Forest park.
Yet, even though Seattle’s mighty giants are now sadly extinct, a few remnants still reside in O.O. Denny Park at Kirkland, WA. I measured on Google earth 3D some 200 – 220 footers, a 230 footer, and a whopper! 253 footer! These measurements could be off by some feet, but I think it is within 5 – 10 ft taller than Portland’s giant 242 ft Douglas fir! A 255 -foot, 8-1/2 feet diameter 600 year old Douglas fir blew over in O. O. Denny Park in 2003, breaking off at 91 ft, so this preliminary 253 foot measurement is close to the previous record tree which perished in the same valley, some yards distant. Seward and Schmitz park are impressive, but contain only a handful of 190 – 200 foot trees that I was able to measure so far with the 3D mode, they all seem to have flat tops, like they were all wind blown and lost 100 or more feet over the centuries– most seem to be in the 150 -175 ft range. But I am still exploring Seattle’s parks on Google earth, I hope to be proven wrong and find more 200+ footers than Portland has, but I doubt it. Forest park in Portland is caked with dozens of 200 – 240 foot Douglas fir in the west hills.