Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Yosemite - Wait for me, I'll be back!

I hiked, I climbed, I beheld the glory that is Yosemite and I can't even begin to tell you how spectacular it was. Nature was hurling itself at me at every turn, each sight more breathtaking than the last.  I pushed my body to its limit (which isn't much) and I was sore from the task, but richly rewarded.

I rested my weary body each evening in the quaint Wawona Hotel.  I was so seduced by the front porch of our cabin, I watched the sunset there while sipping on champagne and eating plump strawberries.  I'm telling you, camping is hard work.  After I ran out of champagne, I had to walk at least 50 steps over to the main hotel bar to get another drink.

After a good night's rest, I packed my backpack with water, snacks, camera, maps and hand sanitizer (trust me on this one) and headed down to the valley to behold the Yosemite Valley I had only read about previously.

Spring in Yosemite means the falls are flowing.  The sight of Yosemite Falls as I climbed out of the car almost caused me to fall on my face.

I had to climb.  I had to get closer to the falls whose sweet song in the distance was calling me.  As I got closer, their sweet song gave way to a fierce roar.  The gentle mist I felt in the distance became a shower as I tried to get too close.  The falls have a way of telling you to keep your distance.

Not one to be dissuaded I followed the mist trail uphill 1000 feet on the lore that I would be greeted smack in the face by Vernal Falls.  As I climbed the granite stairs leading to the last portion of the falls, I felt the spray getting stronger and stronger and as I climbed higher and higher I started to realize just how high up I was.  It was hard to collect my thoughts at that moment; I was just there and in awe.

I had my heart set on climbing Half-Dome, but darn it you had to have a reservation to do that.  I just sat there and drank in the view.  If you slip a pair of binoculars in your backpack you can watch for climbers and wish it was you.

I thought maybe perhaps I'd go cool my heels in the hotel pool.  Yeah, no.  I think Half-Dome was less frightening.

Hot Dog Dude on the other hand had his own plans.  He told me, "Next time I kill a bear, I'm having it mounted like this!"  Being our anniversary and all I didn't want to be "Major Mood Killer" so I withheld my response.  "Over my dead body..."  Then I thought wait, "What if he did that to my dead body?"  Then the mood was totally ruined anyways.

John Muir wrote, "Yosemite Valley was by far the grandest of all the special temples of Nature I was ever permitted to enter..."

He also wrote, "The Yosemite trip only made me hungry for another far longer and farther reaching, and I determined to set out again as soon as I had earned a little money to get near views of the mountains in all their snowy grandeur, and study the wonderful forests, the noblest of their kind I had ever seen..."

Yosemite indeed made me hungry, hungry to return and stay longer.

Yosemite - Wait for me, I'll be back!  I'll probably even bring Hot Dog Dude with me too.


  1. I first visited Yosemite when I came to the US in summer time. I spent 2 weeks there and fell in love and told myself I wanted to come back to study about nature (and I really came back to study in the US). Yosemite has been my favorite place on earth. Thanks for sharing the beautiful pictures. Happy Anniversary Gina!

    1. Nami, That is so cool you came here to do that. Next time I want to spend a week or two, although I doubt that would be enough either.

  2. Glad you had such a great time! So beautiful!

  3. I have been to California many times but have never been to Yosemite. I've always wanted to see it and your beautiful photos make me want to go even more. Looks like you had a fabulous vacation. Someday I'll make it.

    Oh, and Happy Anniversary! :)

  4. What a views! I was supposed to go to Yosemite, but weather wasn't too good and it was definitely too cold. I hope next time it will happen.

  5. Now that's my kind of camping! I've only driven through. Never stayed. Inspired now to go back.

  6. Wow Gina, spectacular views and pictures...I am glad that you had a wonderful time and wants to go back...I have not been in Yosemite for years...you just reminded me how beautiful Yosemite is and that I should plan to go back...and soon.
    Have a great week:)

  7. Gosh, it looks so pretty and peaceful! I can see why Hot Dog Dude is such a fan of the great outdoors :)

  8. What an enchanting place to visit my friend, your description really made it an adventure :)

    Choc Chip Uru

  9. I want to visit Yosemite too! Beautiful views and clicks, Gina.

  10. Gorgeous photos, glad you lived to tell about it ;).

  11. Gina,
    It sounds like you had a wonderful trip,champagne and gorgeous views to celebrate your Anniversary. i have never been to Yosemite, but I want to go.

  12. I've never been to Yosemite. What a waste of my life! ;-) Really, it's on that big list of place I need to see - and your post has moved it way up towards the top. Sounds like you had a wonderful time - thanks.

  13. Wow! Gina I'm in awe of the beauty of Yosemite. I have never been and now I really want to. Your type of camping is the only type I can manage, the whole tent thing creeps me out. Thanks for sharing your gorgeous photos and trip.:) Love the pic of you and Hot Dog Dude!xx