Saturday, April 30, 2011

The Spectacular Yosemite Valley

WOW! Somehow a whole week has passed since we last posted here.

During this last week, we have played three days of golf on a couple of beautiful courses. If you are anywhere in the neighborhood of Yosemite be sure to check out the Sierra Meadows Country Club in Ahwahnee. And, if around Sonoma - check out Eagle Vines -

A great day of golf at Eagle Vines.

We also spent a couple of wonderful days in Yosemite.

Entering the Park.

We had another great 'parking' spot for Magic -

Enjoying the Lakers in the great outdoors.

Yosemite National Park was established by an act of Congress on October 1, 1890 and is a park about the size of Rhode Island situated in the Sierra Nevada’s. It is famous for its incredible valley, but the park includes five distinct areas that attract nearly 3.5 million visitors each year. Unfortunately, three of the areas - Glacier Point, the Tioga Road and the Tuolumne Meadows, and Hetch Hetchy were closed due to snow in their higher elevations. So - we spent time in the Valley and Wawona and the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias.

The valley is seven miles long and one mile across and was formed by glacial erosion over hundreds of thousands of years. The walls of the valley are draped with waterfalls that were running full due to all the snow and precipitation this winter and early spring and, therefore, were simply beautiful! The Upper and Lower Yosemite Falls - the signature fall in the Valley - combine to drop almost 2,500 feet making this the tallest waterfall in North America.

Upper Yosemite Falls.

Upper and Lower Falls.

Just outside of the Valley is one of the most photographed vistas in the world. Here one gets a classic view of Yosemite Valley, including El Capitan (on the left), Clouds Rest (in the middle where the clouds are ‘resting’), Half dome (coming around clockwise), Sentinel Rock, Cathedral Rocks and Bridalveil Fall. We spent quit a bit of time here just taking in the sights! (Gary does get a little bit of slack for the phone thing -- as he got an offer on his Mother’s house and was trying to move the deal along while there. This is a good thing.)

Channelling Ansel Adams?? ... Not.

You've gotta see this view!!

Can we park Magic here?

The elevations in the park range from 2,000 feet to 13,000 feet. So while the Valley was quite nice, Wawona and the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias was back in the snow! This eliminated our anticipated hike;-(

Shoulder deep snow in the Mariposa Grove.

Our stay in Yosemite had to come to an end and we moved on to the Napa/Sonoma area for a few days. Surprisingly, there was no wine tasting - just visits and dinners with friends;-) Oh yes - and one SLEEPLESS night watching THE WEDDING!!

Tomorrow we head toward the coast.

More later - E & G

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