A sign for the "Immortal Tree" lures three-quarters of all Avenue of the Giants traffic to stop and look.
An attraction with a name like "Immortal Tree" is just asking for trouble. Still, this almost 1,000-year-old redwood has survived lightning, fire, floods, and ax-happy junior Bunyans.
A sign next to the trunk recounts its various brushes with death: lightning removed the top, the logger's axe had at it in 1908, forest fires and the notorious "Flood of 1964." The tree was once 298 ft. tall, and has been whittled to a still respectable 258 feet, with a base diameter of 14 1/2 feet.
As visual aids to remind about its perils, an ax is attached about 10 feet up the trunk. Even higher on the tree is a metal fish, indicating the high water mark of the flood it survived.