. I didn't have my flip flops on thank goodness and, once again, the trusty hiking boots came in handy. Even so, it was tempting to take them off and cool our feet in the mountain stream but those wet rocks are sooooo slippery.
We were all exhausted after our climb and the weather was too hot for more hikes so, after a long cold drink, we queued up for the shuttle bus to take us back to the car. These buses have a driver at the front and doors in the middle where passengers get off. The queue was long so we didn't manage to get on the first bus and there was the usual queue jumping and jostling going on so we were quite anxious not to have to wait for a third bus to finally come along. As we jostled with everyone else, just about to board, jamie hopped on ... And the doors closed! The three of us were left standing OUTSIDE the bus and jamie was whisked away INSIDE the bus. Then we heard someone say that wasn't the bus that was going to the car park, it was the bus that toured the park
! We actually laughed all the way back to the car, wondering whether jamie was enjoying his tour and found it even funnier that there is no mobile signal anywhere in the park, so communication was impossible. We decided we would put in a final effort and walk to the car, rather than wait and take our chances in the scramble for a third bus. We seemed to take the long way round though as there were no signs pointing the way and we were hot and tired.....
Imagine our faces when, after our 15 minute walk, there was jamie smugly standing waiting for us at the car all rested and superior. Humph
Yosemite is certainly enormous at just under 750,000 acres, but despite this, I can't rank it as one of my favourites. It was a long drive back to the hotel and everyone was sleepy and poor Kevin got the job of staying awake to drive us home. Well, we shared Yosemite together at least, even though it wasn't one of our favourites, we all have the memory of having climbed up a waterfall and jamie winning the game!
Despite a late start, we did manage to see most of the things that draw visitors in their millions to this park, El Capitan, the Merced River, Half Dome and Bridalveil falls. Our first glimpse of the valley shows the classic overview, with all the landmarks in sight from one viewpoint. It is said that this is the very spot that the first non-natives "discovered" the valley. El Capitan is in sight from many areas of the park and is the largest sheer face of granite in the world. But the star attraction for us was Bridalveil Falls which we took a short hike to and then proceeded to clamber up the boulders and rocks to get a closer look, as many others were also doing. I lagged along behind, being the most unfit, and trying to protect my camera from being wrecked, until jamie rescued my rucksack and carried it the rest of the way as though it was a feather on his back. He sprinted on ahead and beat us all in the "who can climb the highest" game while the three of us rested on an area of flat boulders by the trickling icy cold waters lower down, but still about two thirds of the way up