Thursday, August 28, 2008

the trip home from Yosemite--Part VII: Sequoia National Park

(Sequoia National Park, July 2006)

After spending several days in Yosemite we headed south to Sequoia National Park. Sequoia is less crowded than Yosemite and the giant trees are stunning. The branch (above) we're sitting on fell from the General Sherman tree, the largest tree in the world in terms of mass.

After Sequoia we traveled further south to the Kern River and did some river-rafting. I didn't know what to expect but shooting the whitewater wasn't as scary as I'd thought.

We ended up making a giant loop from Orange County in Southern California up Highway 395 then west to Yosemite and down Highway 5 home. An amazing vacation. The scenery was a feast for the eyes!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Yosemite--Part VI: Bridalveil Falls

(Bridalveil Falls, July 2006)

The hike to Bridaveil Falls in Yosemite Valley. Look close and you'll see a rainbow.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Part V: Yosemite Valley

(Yosemite Falls 2006)

(Half Dome 2006)

One phrase describes Yosemite Valley, cut by glaciers eons ago: the Garden of Eden--lush and primordial with meadows and waterfalls and a river. An opposite environment than our wonderful deserts, Yosemite Valley is a different kind of beautiful.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

en route to Yosemite--Part IV: along Tioga Road

(west on Tioga Road on the way to Yosemite, July 2006)

Past Tuolumne Meadows we wound along Tioga Road (California State Route 120) to Yosemite Valley. To keep entertained Juliana kept a count of the number of waterfalls she saw, from tiny trickles to larger spouts. They totaled over 100.

We came across a place we had stopped a few years earlier--a huge expanse of gray rock. Marmots--big rodent-like critters--hovered in the bushes, waiting for tourist treats. Wherever you go in the Sierras, the scenery is gorgeous!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

en route to Yosemite--Part III: Tioga Pass and Tuolumne Meadows

(Ellery Lake, elevation 9,538 feet, July 2006)

(Tuolumne Meadows, elevation 8,775 feet, eastern entrance of Yosemite National Park, 2006)

On the next leg of our trip we drove from Mono Lake over the Tioga Pass to the eastern entrance to Yosemite. Tuolumne Meadows, the largest sub-alpine meadow in the High Sierra, is 60 miles from Yosemite Valley. A gorgeous, lush place with many hiking and backpacking trails.