We took advantage of my business trip in late July to the Los Angeles area to take a family trip to Yosemite National Park (https://www.nps.gov/yose/index.htm). While not necessarily the closest option, Mrs. SFTE had never been and I was there only once for about a day back when I lived in San Francisco. So we decided to go for it.
Given that we had limited time and the trip was multi-purpose, I think we did a pretty solid job of seeing a solid portion of the park.
We left the Los Angeles area around noon and had a pretty hefty drive up to the park.
We have some friends that worked in the park for a while, so we asked them about areas that would provide a good feel for the park given our limited time but also help avoid the heat and the crowds.
They sent us up to Toulomne Meadows. I’d highly recommend making the trek up there.
We did a few hikes here.
Lembert Dome – awesome hike!
We at lunch by some cascades on the Dana Fork.
We did a scramble up a dome near Olmstead Point.
And then finished with a hike through the Wawona Grove of Giant Sequoias.
We decided to take on Yosemite Valley. First up was the Mist Trail – all the way to Nevada Falls. The above average snowpack meant the water flow was still impressive.
We got an early start, but to avoid the crowds coming up the trail, we descended via the John Muir Trail.
Super proud of Little SFTE. She handled the hike like a champ.
Once we got back to the valley, we walked over to the visitor’s center and grabbed a pizza and ate it by the river. There was also a river bath – but no pictures were taken.
Unfortunately, we had to head back to Los Angeles to catch our flight. On the way out of the park, we checked out El Capitan.
Climb on, kid!
And, we stopped by the Mariposa Grove. As expected, it was super crowded, but still worth a visit.
It is difficult to describe the scale of the majesty of the park. All I can really say is that you need to go see it for yourself. I just kept muttering “this is freakin’ amazing” at every turn.
There’s not much we would do differently. We’d like to come back and spend more time up in Toulomne Meadows and try to camp up there.