Day 289 – Yosemite and Beyond, October 1, 2011
Well, I survived the forest fires, fear of active bears, and
camping roadside last night, though VANilla reeks of smoke and dead animal
smell. Whew, I hope it goes away
soon. I returned to Yosemite for one
final visit. First I swung through the
valley to take advantage of the only shower facilities in the enormous
park. I couldn’t believe how low the
Merced River was flowing. In May, it was
swelling out of its banks. Today,
sandbars were poking up in the middle of the river. Many of the waterfalls appear to be seasonal
as well, as I didn’t notice some of them today.
For a waterfall lover, the best time to visit Yosemite would be as soon
as all the roads open. I believe this is
generally in May, though this year due to the heavy winter, I believe it was
After my shower, I headed toward the southern portion of the
park where we followed Glacier Point Road 17 miles to Glacier Point parking lot. A four-mile, round trip trail that changes
over 3,000 feet in elevation each direction leads to Glacier Point. Under different circumstances, I would have
opted in, but with a late start, Petey in VANilla, and a wound that still needs
more time to heal, I chose to enjoy the vista just fifty yards from the parking
lot. The overlook provided a remarkable
panorama of Half Dome, Nevada Falls, and Vernal Falls even on this smoky day.
Just as I was preparing to leave the parking lot, a Ferrari
Club pulled in. At least ten different
Ferrari’s hummed to the end of the parking lot.
I hope they didn’t have to follow an RV up the winding road. That wouldn’t have been any fun for the
drivers! On our way back down, we made a
final stop at Washburn Point before making our way to Fresno for the evening.
I see why Yosemite is always full. It isn’t very far from large California
cities and frankly its commanding and unique landscape is inspiring. In Fresno, VANilla is going in for some TLC
before we make two unscheduled visits to Sequoia and Kings Canyon as we depart
the Golden State. Technically, I have
completed all the scenic road trips listed in my Reader’s Digest book with the
exception of the ones in Alaska and Hawaii.
My blog and adventures will be coming to an end within the week…ETB