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“The trunk seemed to stretch up forever, the blue sky glinting between the bright green leaves.”
Hollypaw describing the Sky Oak in Dark River, page 94

The Sky Oak, or the Ancient Oak is a large oak tree in the ThunderClan lake territory.[3]

Description

The Sky Oak is an enormous oak tree that is taller than the beech trees surrounding it.[2] Its located south of ThunderClan camp and west of the WindClan border.[3] From it, the lake can still be seen which lies further south. It is said to have been once used as a rabbit's burrow, hidden underneath twisting roots. In the root system it is quite spacious as five grown cats are able to fit without much trouble.[2]
ThunderClan cats use the Sky Oak as a training ground to teach apprentices tree climbing skills and to practice stalking their prey.[1] It has a similar role as the Great Sycamore did back in the forest territories.[4][note 1]

Book mentions

In The New Prophecy arc

Starlight

While searching for territories around the lake, Brambleclaw, Squirrelflight, Tawnypelt, Mistyfoot and Crowfeather take shelter from the rain underneath the Sky Oak's huge roots.

In the Power of Three arc

The Sight

A dead female fox is found by the Sky Oak, so Jaykit, Lionkit and Hollykit decide to help Thornclaw's patrol by locating the fox cubs. The three kits locate the scent of the milk-trail and soon find the cubs not too far from the Sky Oak.
Later, as the ThunderClan cats make their way to the Gathering they race past the Sky Oak down to the lake. It is later mentioned by Jaypaw, as he states that he hadn't been further than the Sky Oak in days, in regards to his first trip to the Moonpool.
Jaypaw makes a remark that Mousefur is older than the Sky Oak after Longtail announces that she is wheezing.
The Sky Oak is later used to host the tree-climbing contest during the daylight Gathering. Spiderleg is said to have checked the tree, noting that it was in full bud, but that he didn't think that having apprentices climb it would damage them. After the daylight Gathering concludes, Onestar announces that Heatherpaw climbed to the top of the Sky Oak.

Dark River

Mousepaw tells his fellow apprentices, Cinderpaw, and Hollypaw that he is going to climb the Sky Oak. Cinderpaw notes that it is the tallest tree in the forest, while Hollypaw cautiously reminds him that there are squirrels in other trees. The tom insists, stating that he wants to impress his mentor, Spiderleg. Mousepaw scares away the squirrel that he was hunting and tells his peers that he was now stuck.
The warriors present, Spiderleg, Brackenfur, and Cloudtail try and find a solution, but before that, Cinderpaw offers to fetch the tom. As she reaches Mousepaw and helps him back down, a bird calls an alarm, making the tom lose his balance. Cinderpaw manages to save him, but she loses her balance and falls to the ground, breaking her leg.

Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 Revealed in Dark River, page 163
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Revealed in Starlight, page 81
  3. 3.0 3.1 As revealed by the official map in Secrets of the Clans and in all books where the action takes place at the lake.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Revealed in Bluestar's Prophecy, page 81

Notes

  1. As shown in Bluestar's Prophecy, the Great Sycamore in the forest territories was used for hunting practice, and the Sky Oak is used as such in the lake territories.[4]
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