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Yosemite National Park!

My legs…. HURT!

I’ve been in Yosemite park since Wed and I have had so much FUN! That place is just gorgeous! I wish that I could spend months there camping and hiking through the back country and just sitting on the rocks overlooking a waterfall and reflecting on life. There were many times when the beauty of that place brought a tear to my eyes.

Wed night Christian came over and brought all his shit, we hung out that night and finished getting the group stuff ready and had a few drinks. Got up Thursday morning and picked up the rental truck and then everyone showed up at my place around 9. We loaded up and headed out. The drive there was pretty easy really, we only stopped once, but got LOST in the town that we were in and could NOT find the way back to the freeway! Once we got into the park I was so excited to just get there. I love flying around all those curvy roads, the people in the back seat though were getting sick. Opps! We got into the park about 3:30ish and quickly unpacked and then did a quick 2 mile hike up to Mirror lake. I fell in. 🙁

Friday morning we got up early and cooked breakfast. We were going to do the Panorama Trail so went up to the lodge to get tickets on the shuttle bus but they were all sold out till 1:30pm! Decided not to do that and went on the Upper Yosemite Falls trail instead. The sign said it was only 3.2 miles, so we figured it’d be pretty easy, little did we know that in those 3.2 miles you gained 3,000 feet in elevation! It was very hard for most of the group. Half of them turned around about half way to the top. Even I had lots of problems the last 3/4 mile. Between the steepness of the trail and the elevation I could hardly breathe! But it was really worth all the work to get to the top and see this amazing waterfall just flying over the edge of the cliffs. We hiked a little bit past there, then stopped at the river bed and filled up our water bottles for the hike down.

Got back from that and made dinner then a few of us went to a talk given by Ron Kauk where he showed Return to Balance: A Climbers Journey which had some amazing shots of him climbing and of Yosemite in general. It was really neat to see. I talked to him after and got some pointers for my next trip up to Yosemite where I could do some easier climbing. After that I had to run to the Village to do some work and then back to the campsite for bed.

Saturday morning we got up VERY early because our bus for Glacier Point left at 8:30am! We got everyone up and breakfast cooked and on the road just in time! The bus driver was really funny and was telling stories the whole way up there. We got there and looked around a little bit and then started our hike down Panorama Trail. This one ended up being around 10 miles total and 5,100 descend and about 1,900 ascending. We got to see some amazing views of the falls throughout the park. Some of which were Illilouette Fall, Nevada Fall, Vernal Fall and ended along the VERY steep but wonderful Mist Trail.

Part of the group turned back once we hit the mist trail. Which was probably a mistake, because they then had a 4 mile hike ahead of them, instead of just the 3 very steep miles that we had. The Mist trail was just amazing though! We got back an hour before the rest of them did. That night Nick and I headed up to Tuolumne Meadows to watch the sunset… The meadows are at 8,600 feet above sea level, it was 41 degrees when we got there and there was still pockets of snow! But we were crazy and went SWIMMING in the river! 🙂 Ok, I was in the water for about 1.5 seconds before I jumped out screaming like a little girl. Nick was more manly and was in for about 4 seconds total! It was wonderfully refreshing though after the long day of hiking we had. We spent a few hours in the meadows and really enjoyed the sunset. It was just amazing.

Got back to camp late that night and we all sat around drinking and talking and having a great time… Got up about 7 on Sunday morning and Sirin made breakfast for everyone which was delicious. Packed up camp and we were out of there by 10am! Got back to LA around 3:30 and unpacked.

It was so wonderful being up there, sleeping out under the stars and just hiking and enjoying nature. I cried a little bit as we left, and then again as we were coming over the pass into LA and seeing all the smog and the cars again. I hate smog and cars. I just want to sleep under the stars and enjoy nature!

All the photos are available here. And you can view our google earth tracks/photos here.