hiking

Yosemite

About a month ago Tim and I spent a few days exploring Yosemite. And, though I tried to capture the grandure of it all, I still don’t think the pictures completely do this place justice.

This is the view on the drive in. It was at about this point that we started to really get excited.

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El Capitan

El Capitan is the first really identifiable thing you see as you enter the park (the north side of Yosemite Valley). It is absolutely ginormous, and is probably my favorite of all the rock formations in the park. Made of granite, it is 3,000 feet tall from base to summit. It is, not surprisingly, a favorite destination for rock climbers and BASE Jumpers, though I can’t imagine doing either.
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Half Dome

Half Dome is agruably the most recognizable rock formation inside Yosemite (it was even depicted on the California state quarter). You need to obtain a permit to hike the cable rout up to the summit. I feel light headed just looking at the picture, so I don’t think I’ll be doing that any time soon.
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Yosemite Falls

At 2,425 feet from the top of the upper falls, to the base of the lower falls, Yosemite Falls is the highest measured falls in North America. I fully suggest going in mid to late spring when the water flow is at its peak.

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Tim taking a picture of Yosemite Falls.

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Camp Curry

We stayed at Camp Curry, one of the many lodging options inside Yosemite. We didn’t want to stay in a hotel, but it was still a bit too cold at night to stay in a tent (at least in my opinion), even though we would have preffered tent camping. These canvas tent cabins were the perfect compromise. They even have cabins you can rent that include heating units.

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Mirror Lake

Mirror lake is seriously rediculous. It’s one of the prettiest lakes I’ve ever been to. On a smaler scale, it actually reminded me a lot of Trillium Lake back home in Oregon, but that may just be because of the comparison between Mt. Hood reflecting in Trillium Lake, and Half Dome reflecting in Mirror Lake. It’s a must see/must photograph spot for sure.
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I loved how this tree on the shore of Mirror Lake managed to grow around that giant boulder. IMG_4500psHere’s the thing about the deer in Yosemite. They aren’t all that afraid of people. I guess that makes sense seeing as how many people are visiting the park at any given time. I have mixed feelings about this fact. On one hand I think it’s pretty sad that these wild animals have no real fear of people. On the other hand it was pretty cool getting so close to them. Now, I should clarify, I am in no way advocating getting “too” close to them, as they are still wild animals, and I certainly don’t recommend trying to pet them, etc. Let’s be smart people. But, there were a few occasions where my proximity was closer then I’ve been before to deer, and afforded some pretty cool experiences.

Walking back to camp from Mirror lake we found ourselves in a small deer stampede. Seriously. We were walking up the trail, saw one deer up on the side of the hill. Stopped to see if she would make another appearance so I could grab a pic. Then that one deer turned into five up on the hill, and suddenly the male of the pack was herding them our dirrection…at a full on run. We jumped out of the way, onto the opposite side of the trail, as all five deer darted within a foot or two from us. It was pretty awesome.

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Here are some other random pics from our adventures in Yosemite.

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Muir Woods

My husband and I are collecting National Parks. We want to see and experience as many of them as possible. Most recently we spent a few days enjoying Yosemite, but prior to that we spent a quitet Tuesday afternoon hiking through Muir Woods again.  And though it’s technically a National Monument, rather than a “Park”, it is still a favorite of ours, and best yet it’s basically in our backyard (or at least within a quick drive of it). You’ll hear all about Yosemite soon enough, but first lets go on a walk through the giant redwoods.

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Sweeny Ridge

Now that we’ve reached that brief period of time here in San Francisco where the weather is both clear, and relatively warm, Tim and I have been spending much less time hitting the treadmill, and much more time hiking the hills. Sweeny Ridge to be exact.  And actually, I’m kind of torn on this one, because the Oregonian in me has a hard time actually calling this hiking.  I mean, it’s paved, and I don’t actually have to wear my hiking boots, and I probably won’t see any deer along the way (though last time we did spot a wild bunny).  So is it really hiking? Or, should we just start calling it what it really is…walking up and down a big hill.  But on the other hand, this is likely as close to actual hiking as we will probably get for not traveling far outside of SF.  Either way it’s a pretty hike/walk, and is far more interesting than watching your reflection work out on the treadmill in front of those horrible floor to ceiling mirriors all gyms seem to be equipped with. But  I digress…

I really like Sweeny Ridge. It’s not exactly a long trip, just 1.7 miles up and back down, so we’re only talking 3.5 miles or so. But I get a pretty good work out of it. Especially since there is about a quarter mile stretch up the hill at one point which totally kicks my ass.  Pardon the languange here, but I call it Son of a Bitch Hill. I hate Son of a Bitch Hill, and I think this brief little stretch of seemingly neverending exertion qualifies the entire Sweeny Ridge hike as a legit workout. But I guess getting to look at all the pretty things along the way is what keeps me going back.

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Wandering around the Presidio

The Presidio is like Golden Gate Park’s less popular cousin. That’s kind of why I like it. It also means that it’s often less crowded. Periodically Tim and I find ourselves with no plans and nothing to do on a weekend, so we run off to wander the park. Here’s what we found on one of our random Presidio hikes.

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Milagra Spur Trail

Hi! So, you probably noticed that things have been a little quiet around here lately. Every once in a while I take a little blog hiatus. Mostly because winter time just isn’t very inspiring to me, so I forget (choose not to) blog. But I have high hopes that Spring is on it’s way, so here I am, back in the blog world. I’ve got some back-tracking to do, with hikes and day trips from the last few months to cover. So bear with me as we take a little jump back in time over the next few weeks.

And, on with the show.

A few months ago (I forget exactly when) Tim and I took a little side trip down the coast to the Milagra Spur Trail. Actually, it was more of an excuse to work off the fabulous Gorilla Barbeque that we had just enjoyed. But regardless of our motives, it was a pretty little walk.

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