The famous Giant Sequoia Tunnel Tree, so named because of the passageway that was carved through its trunk over 135 years ago, has toppled over following the heavy rains that fell on the East Coast on Sunday. The ancient tree, located in the Calaveras Big Trees State Park in Arnold, California, was one of a group of trees that are thought to be over 1,000 years old. This is a relatively young age for a Giant Sequoia tree which, according to the National Park Service, can easily live to be over 3,000 years old.

Also dubbed the Pioneer Cabin, the tree’s tunnel was so big that visitors could drive through it.

It was also about 33 feet in diameter at its base and stood at a towering 150 feet. Although access to the tunnel had long been closed to cars, it still remained a very popular landmark that attracted thousands of hikers each year even though they could only access it on a 1.5-mile loop through the park.

Giant Sequoia Tunnel Tree was 'Barely Alive'

The news that the Giant Sequoia Tunnel Tree had fallen was first announced by Calaveras Big Trees Association, a nonprofit group, when they took to social media to say that “the storm was just too much for it.”

Jim Allday, a volunteer at the park, also shared pictures of the fallen tree and told SF Gate, a subsidiary website of The San Francisco Chronicle, that the Tunnel Tree fell to the ground at about 2 p.m.

on Sunday and that it had “shattered” on impact. His wife, Joan, added that the tree had become “very brittle” and that it had been “barely alive” with only one branch at its top seeming to have any signs of life in it before it met its end.

Jim said that he was out among the trees the very same day it fell and saw the tree with water flooding its remains.

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The trail that led to it, he said, was “literally a river” and that it looked like the once mighty Giant Sequoia Tunnel Tree had become just another tree “laying in a pond or lake with a river running through it.”

Severe storm system blamed for Giant Sequoia Tunnel Tree fall

The rains were severe in Northern California over the weekend as moisture from the tropics resulted in the dumping of 4 to 9 inches of rain in just 48 hours.

Authorities said that there were at least three deaths which occurred during the time and are thought to be linked to the storms.

The Tunnel Tree had had its giant tunnel carved through it since around the 1880s when the landowners at the time undertook the task of carving into a fire scar at its base to create the tourist attraction that would compete with the Wawona Tree in the Yosemite National Park. The Calaveras North Grove, on which the tree had stood, was private property before it was purchased by the California State Park System.