20 miles, 9 hours, 4,000 foot elevation gain, 24 hours of NO PEOPLE, roads closed, snow, record lows, having to go with Plan D! All Priceless! 🙂
Wow, what a weekend. It all started on Thursday night when we decided to have a last minute Pumpkin Pie party. So Sirin, Kris, and Jason all came over to my house and we baked a pumpkin pie, sat around talking and drinking wine! What a great night! It was Sirin’s last weekend in her apartment! :'(
Friday I got up early and headed to work got a TON of stuff done before everyone else showed up and then headed out to Santa Monica for a meeting. Had a great meeting there with a new contractor and then changed and off to Fresno to pick up Nick. Got there about 2:30ish and off to Yosemite. We get to the main gate at 4:20 and the wilderness office in Wawona closed at 4:30, so we booked it down there and get there just as they were about to close, thankfully Nick knew the girls in the office so they were very very helpful, sadly they JUST closed Tioga road up to the Meadows a few minutes before we got there! We ask them to give us a permit for that area anyways and we’ll just hope that they open the road in the morning.
On our way down to the valley it starts snowing pretty good and we stop a few times, pick up some supplies because Nick forgot all his food at home, found the Backpackers campground, setup camp and then headed to the Lodge for dinner. My hottie desk clerk was still working there from this spring! Yum! I got to talk to him this time too! 🙂 After dinner we headed back to the campsite, made a fire and sat around talking for a few hours.
Saturday morning we get up, pack up and head to the Wilderness office, find out that Tioga road was STILL closed and they weren’t expecting it to open till after 1 or 2pm. Glacier road was closed as well, but they were expecting it to open around 10am. So we get a new wilderness permit for some hiking along glacier. We were just going to hike along the rim of the valley and camp up there. So we putz around the valley some more and then head up to Glacier road. Get there right at 10 and the road is still closed. We talk to the ranger at the gate and he said he wasn’t expecting it to open till 1 or 2 now. We didn’t want to wait around just to find out it won’t open at all, etc. So we dig out the map and start looking for alternatives. Finally decide to head out to Hetch Hetchy.
On the drive up there we stop at Tioga road just to check and it was STILL closed, we ran into a guy that we had met at the wilderness office and talk to him for a couple minutes then continue our drive up to Hetch Hetchy. Get there and get a new wilderness permit for the trail we had decided on up to Miguel Meadows. The rangers were very helpful and told us that even though EVERYONE was coming up to that area now that the other two were closed we were the ONLY people getting permits for our trail. GREAT news! So we finally get hiking about 1pm and it was just wonderful out there. By 2pm we were up the trail pretty good and we saw the last of the people we’d see for the next 24 hours! It was wonderful! We get up to the top of the ridge and come across this sign that says we’d already gone 4 miles! Crazy! We really booked it up the first part. So we slowed down from there as we hiked through the meadows.
About 4 we came across an abandoned ranger cabin and decided to put down camp there for the night. We dropped off our gear and explored the area a little bit then headed a few more miles into the park to get to Lake Eleanor. It was about 8 miles round trip to the lake edge and back and only 5 miles to the lake over look. Sadly I was getting a HUGE blister on my foot so we had to turn around. Got back to our camp site and gathered some wood and started a nice big fire, ate dinner and then sat around talking about anything and everything the rest of the night! The cabin/shed provided a GREAT wind barrier because we camped in between them, I’m glad we did too cause it would have been FREEZING even more if we hadn’t had that barrier, you could hear the winds howling pretty damn good! The forecast was for gusts to 50mph!
Crawled into the sleeping bag about 9pm and I went straight to sleep. I had my mummy bag completely closed up so my entire body was all the way inside the bag. The overnight low was around 15 degrees! About 4am I woke up and because my bag had come open a little bit and my nose was FREEZING. Nick was awake as well so we talked a bit and then watched the starts! Sooooooo beautiful! Shooting stars everywhere. I got a little bit freaked out there for a bit though cause I kept hearing branches breaking and stuff! lol. Fell back asleep and woke up again around 7am. Sat in the bag for a while because it was so cold outside. Eventually got up, broke down camp, ate breakfast, explored the area a little more and found that there was an old barn not to far from us, then headed back to the car.
It was so sad heading back that way. I wanted to just keep hiking farther and farther back into the park! We didn’t see a single person till we got back down to the base of the trailhead. It was so sad seeing those first people again! LOL. Got back to the car and headed back to Fresno.
The drive back to Fresno was really nice, stopped into Wawona again and talked to the wilderness permit people again found out that Tioga road was STILL closed and never opened and that Glacier point had JUST opened Sunday morning so it’s a very good thing that we didn’t just sit around and wait for them to open. Though I do kinda wish we had got there before Tioga had closed, we would still be stuck up there! How fun would that be! lol.
Got back to Fresno, dropped Nick off and then headed back to LA. It was so sad driving home! 🙁 When I arrived home Sirin had left her lights on and her windows open, I saw her apartment all empty and was sad that she was gone now!
Overall it turned out to be a GREAT weekend up in Yosemite and I can’t wait to do another trip soon!