Day 14 Yosemite

After a good nights rest from a long day of driving winding roads but mostly flat until we got near Yosemite.? We woke up at the crack of 9:30 and got ready for a day of sight seeing and adventures.?? We were not disappointed.? It is 99 degrees and all that stuff about “dry heat” has nothing to do with it !?? ITS HOT !

We saw a black bear crossing the road in front of us as we returned from Glacier Point, but it was too fast to get the camera ready for a photo so you will just have to trust us.? We also saw a crowd gathered in the road which usually means a wildlife sighting.?? It was a large grizzly and 3 smaller bears but too big to be cubs.? The larger bear was avoiding the crowd and staying in the woods.?? The smaller bears weren’t intimidated at all but we didn’t want to get too close and therefore didn’t get a great shot.?? It was breath taking to see them in the wild and eating their natural foliage.?? Soon after, the ranger showed up and told everyone to get their pictures and leave the bear alone.

The drive from West Mariposa KOA in MidPines CA (population 432) is a sleep? little village town with a few good places to eat, sleep, and buy groceries.?? The KOA was 7 miles outside of town in the direction of Yosemite. (see photos in the slide show)

The drive to any of the 3 points of interest for us was definitely not RV friendly drives.? Our 3 points of interest were Yosemite Valley, Glacier Point, and Mariposa Grove for the big trees.?? It was good that we brought the toad (Honda Civic) for the touring. ? It was either major uphill or downhill to every point.

*Stop 1
Yosemite158In Yosemite Valley we paid to get into the park and entry fee of $30 that was good for the week.?? We shortly came upon an unattended gas station with a sign that said “NO GAS IN YOSEMITE VALLEY”? so if you wanted gas you had to pay $4.36 for the cheap stuff.? We had fortunately filled up earlier so we were good and we only paid $3.86 per gallon outside the park at this cute little country general store that had a cooler like back in the 30’s for eggs and milk.?? Very nice lady running the store too.

*Stop 2
Yosemite091At Glacier Point we reached a point of 7214 feet at the top of Glacier Point. ? There was a view of 1/2 dome and using a telescope we could see multiple people on top of that dome. ? They had to have climbed it, or been dropped by helicopter because there was no elevator going up.

The Drive back down was just as scenic and maybe easier to view because we weren’t on the drop off side.?? Going up, there is no guard rail, just caution signs.? So it was a little unnerving to see the drop off of several thousand feet with no rail.

*Stop 3
Yosemite140Mariposa Grove was our final stop and with the distance between all the points it was a good thing we started early.? It was quite a hike from the parking lot to the grove of HUGE trees.? Approximately 1.2 miles, but very steep uphill and hot. ? I would use a better word but HUGE is as large as I can think of.?? They were HUGE times HUGE.? See photos below.

While we were there we saw many grey squirrels running all over the place, and one large deer that didn’t seem to mind us intruding on his territory.? We say the “drive through” tree that you can no longer drive to it to drive through, but your car would have to be tiny to get through it anyway.?? We saw the tree named Grizzly Giant, and many others.?? However they seemed to only exist in this one spot.?? It wasn’t like the entire Yosemite area had these HUGE trees.

There were several people I would label “tree huggers” at the park that were quick to tell everyone what to touch and what not to touch, and don’t take any pine cones out of the park, and don’t step on the roots.?? OH! and one mother was educating her child that the sticky stuff on the tree was the tree’s blood.??? I poured tree blood on my pancakes this morning if that is the case. 😉

Tomorrow will be a day of nothing.? Just rest, and restock for the return journey through Barstow, and Monument Valley.