Yosemite National Park

Trip Start Mar 28, 2012
Trip End May 24, 2012

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Where I stayed
Motel 6 Mammoth Lakes
Read my review - 4/5 stars

Flag of United States  , California
Wednesday, May 9, 2012

After a good night's sleep it was a bowl of cereal in our room and then of to a local bakery for coffee and this time a croissant. Then we set off north to find the Tioga Pass and entry into Yosemite National Park. The pass was steep but because there is so much space here the roads are very wide with gentle turns and they are very well maintained. The car was set on cruise control and we gracefully made our way up the mountain. The journey up was spectacular and encounter Ellery Lake (9538') still frozen was exciting. another lapse in planning failed to establish that this pass usually only opens in June because it is snow-bound. Mercifully it opened last week!

Entrance to the Park was straightforward thanks to our annual pass - we are now $5 to the good! The Park entrance is at 9945' (3031m) and from there it was a 46 mile drive down to Yosemite Valley nearly 6000' below with plenty of stops along the way for photos.

The air was clear an the sun shining on snow-capped peaks was breath-taking. There was still three to four feet of lying snow in many places along with frozen lakes and rivers. I could witter on for hours, but I'll let the photos speak for themselves.

Down in the valley there is a concentration of camp sites, shops, hire facilities and the Ansel Adams Gallery. Even if the name means nothing to you, you will have seen some of his iconic images of this Park and many others in the USA. Do check them out.

We retraced our steps and encountered Mono Lake - an ancient caldera, now a saline lake with tremendous examples of Tufa! This is one of 21 extinct volcanoes that guard the eastern entrance to Yosemite. Then we visited Niceley's Restaurant for our evening meal which was good - but too much for both of us! Then back to Mammoth Lakes.

Tomorrow we head back through the Park and on west to San Francisco.
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Norman on

What stunning photos - it must have been even more amazing in actuality. Glad the snow had thawed earlier to allow you to pass. Hope all is still going well. Love and prayers, Norman.

Frances on

Yosemite looks so beautiful. The landscape is spectacular!

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