Thank goodness for pictures, because it’s hard to describe Yosemite in words. We spent 5 nights camped next to Half Dome, biked all over the Valley, visited the Mariposa Grove of Tall Trees, and took in the breathtaking views from Glacier Point.
A little history worthy of sharing is that although Yellowstone was the first official National Park, Yosemite was the first area preserved for public use by the federal government. In 1864, in the middle of the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln created the Yosemite Grant which preserved the area and gave California administrative control the park. In 1890, it became the second national park. Teddy Roosevelt visited the park in 1903 and spent four nights camping and conversing with John Muir, after which he went on to designate 228 other national parks/monument sites. Needless to say, much of what we know as the National Park system today was inspired by the awesome beauty of Yosemite.
El Capitan and Half Dome
Scott in front of El Cap. We enjoyed searching for rock climbers with our binoculars. They are so small in comparison to the cliff that you can barely see them with the naked eye on their multi-day climb to the top. (Did not inspire us to take up climbing.)
Yosemite Falls is dry this time of year, but we hiked to Bridal Veil Falls which is currently flowing, or mostly misting!
At Glacier Point
The California Tunnel Tree in Mariposa Grove. This was the only tree not fenced off from visitors (aka…the only tree I got to hug). Apparently they figure what more harm could be done to it. It was cut out about 100 years ago. Needless to say, they do not do that anymore.
History and photo of Roosevelt and Muir at the Grizzly Tree
Me at the Grizzly Tree!
Sunset on Half Dome was our entertainment every night. We had a gorgeous view from our campsite. The sunset reflects off the rocks in the most dramatic fashion, casting a glow that ranges from gold, to orange to red.
Time lapse photo of sunset! We did this every night. From the campsite, from the roof of the RV, and this one from the meadow near our campground. 45 minutes condensed down to 30 seconds. Enjoy.
In the Yosemite Valley. The fall colors were gorgeous!
We had tons of deer come through our campsite. This buck was traveling with his ladies in the valley.
And now for my homage to Ansel Adams. I took a half day photography class through the Ansel Adams Gallery in the park. It was so much fun! There were only two of us in the class and we walked about 5 miles with the instructor, visiting spots where Adams took photos and taking a shot a recreating some of them. In addition to the history, there was a lot of hands on instruction that gave me such a better understanding of the manual settings that I had never bothered to master my digital camera, including black and white! It made me miss the days in the field with my 4×5 view camera, and even more the long nights in the darkroom! Ansel Adams created so much of his magic in the darkroom. Anyway, enjoy my amateur recreations, and maybe there will be a few more black and white photos to come on the blog.