Beauty on Our Doorstep

Trip Start Jul 13, 2009
Trip End Oct 07, 2009

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Flag of United States  , California
Saturday, September 19, 2009

On arrival at Yosemite Bug Inn we decided to take a cabin rather than permanent tent as the communal showers and toilets didn't look that great and they were a bit of a hike up the hill from the tent. We were in luck and there was a cabin available and the shared bathroom was just between us and our nextdoor neighbours. It felt like home straight away. We had a deck out the front which we used most nights to have a drink and watch the stars. There is also a cafe which does good meals and serves beer and wine, and they had live music every night we were there. Very cool atmosphere.

The first day we headed into Yosemite National Park and headed straight to Bridal Veil Falls. There wasn't much water coming down but it was still beautiful... and would have been even more so if there hadn't been as many tourists. We got talking to a local though and that was interesting. We then headed off to the Mirror Lake trail. Again we found Yosemite Village and Curry Village very busy with tourists and parking was slim. We had to park at Curry Village and take the free bus to the trail head. We took the dirt path which ended up being a mistake as it was covered in dry horse crap which meant loads of flies (we later found there is a 1 mile road there for cyclists and pedestrians too). Any how, we kept looking for the lake and had to stop for a rock slide. We turned around and headed back and then noticed we had hiked too far anyway. The lake was dry as it was seasonal. If we had taken the road it would have popped us out directly at the signs. After a few photos of the dry lake we caught the bus back to the car and got some lunch. Glacier Point looked good so we headed up there and stuck around for the Sunset talk (we had a very late lunch). That was really interesting and told you about how the peaks were named. There was a nice sunset and the stars were awesome. We also noticed climbers lights halfway up rockfaces!

The next day we headed south to Wawona and the Mariposa Grove. The carpark at the Mariposa Grove was full so we had lunch by the river and parked at Wawona Visitor Centre so we could take the bus back there. We just missed one so we noticed there was a trail to the grove. We asked a ranger at the visitor centre what the trail was like and she said it was nice and 6.5 mile long one way then we could walk down and catch the bus back. She didn't tell us there was a 2100 ft elevation change and all uphill. It was a nice trail through the trees to the sequoia grove but again it didn't blow us away. We ended up walking about 8 miles as we had to see the Grizzly Giant sequoia tree after walking all that way! It was a great day. You can see photos of the tree but it is so hard to fit it in a shot!

The last day we were heading for Lake Tahoe but decided we might as well make it scenic and drove through Yosemite and over the Tioga Pass. It was beautiful. We wished we had done one of the hikes up there as it was amazing. Next time! We stopped off at Tenaya Lake for lunch and Adi went for a paddle. We watch climbers going up one of the nearby hills. The drive was really cool apart from the end where Adrian realised we had left the folder with all our bookings back at Yosemite Bug Inn. We call them and they said they would arrange a courier for it to San Francisco.

Yosemite is best seen in spring when Mirror Lake is full and the waterfalls are gushing. Yosemite was still a very beautiful place as you will see from the photos and believe me I really wanted to be climbing. It would be fantastic to get to one of those summits one day.
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