FACT CHECK: Does This Image Show A ‘Tree Root Cave’ In Big Sur, California?

Trevor Schakohl | Fact Check Reporter

An image shared on Facebook purportedly shows a “tree root cave” located in Big Sur, California.

Verdict: Misleading

The image shows a cave located in Washington state’s Olympic National Park, not in Big Sur, California.

Fact Check:

The image shared on Facebook shows what appears to be a tree and its roots growing over a depression between two sandy cliffs, creating a cave-like space underneath it. “Tree root cave, Big Sur, California,” reads the image’s caption.

Big Sur is a popular tourist destination made up of a 100-mile-long stretch of coastline located in western California, according to Britannica. Many beaches and state parks can be found in the region, according to the Big Sur’s Chamber of Commerce website.

The “tree root cave” pictured in the post is not located in Big Sur, however. An internet search revealed the tree is actually located in Washington state, not California. A photo of it can be found on the National Parks Traveler website along with information that states it is located in Washington’s Olympic National Park, more than 900 miles to the north of Big Sur.

“The ‘Tree Root Cave,’ aka ‘Tree of Life’, is located on Kalaloch Beach, down the steps from the Kalaloch Campground Day Use Area in Olympic National Park, Washington,” reads the website. “This oddity of nature resulted from a stream undercutting the bluff on which the tree still clings by a few strong roots.”

The tree was also the subject of a 2018 video from Seattle-based NBC affiliate KING 5, which can be found on the outlet’s verified Facebook page. (RELATED: Viral Image Claims California Is Registering Non-Citizens To Vote And Not Complying With The ‘Federal Election Integrity Program’)

Check Your Fact previously debunked a viral image that purportedly showed a tree embedded with a bicycle that was abandoned by a soldier who died after going off to war in 1914.

Trevor Schakohl

Fact Check Reporter
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