My friends know that I'm just not a morning person. We keep saying that we'll go to bed early and get up early and go off early and somehow it never works.
We got off earlier today than yesterday, that's saying something but at this moment, I'm so tired (and Nick is napping and it's 11pm, go figure) that I don't remember when. Ah, but the camera knows, wait a sec...........
Took a picture of Nick loading the car at 10:38am. Took a picture of officially entering Yosemite (while there was a long line of cars to get in at 11:16am. I apparently took another 200 pictures before getting to Bishop (where we are right now!). Oh hey, Nick's awake. This will be short since he wants to check email too.
Why are we both so tired? We took two hikes in high altitude. The first was down to see the Giant Sequoias in Tuolomne Grove. It's just a mile - downhill the whole way. We also did the 1/2 mile nature loop at the grove. And then, the long slog backup hill. We took a short granola bar break and several photo breaks and smiled and chatted more pleasantly with the people coming down than those coming up had when we were coming down. One woman (she up, we down) actually said "it wasn't worth it!") I disagree, trees which are thousands of years old - you know? Gives you a sense of your real place in the universe.
We found a pace at which I could keep moving without losing my breath. Slow and steady. My best bit of detective work - there were no markers or landmarks for a sense of distance - was when a young woman came by eating a Popsicle. I said to Nick - it's 75% eaten, she had to have pulled it out of a freezer in the parking lot - she was moving at a decent clip - how far did she come? We decided we had 10-15 more minutes. Then we passed the berries that I'd photographed early on and voila - the parking lot!
Our plan was to eat lunch at Tenaya Lake. We had the leftovers from last night's dinner. We hadn't been sure we had decent plastic knives so cut everything up before putting in the to-go boxes. A good idea! But, while we've mastered leaving before noon, we still haven't gotten to lunch before 3pm. Maybe tomorrow.
Part of the challenge is the slow hiking, part is the need to stop and take photos. One reason I take so many is I bracket my shots [what the camera thinks, one step more than camera thinks, one step less] In general, the best shots are the ones one stop underexposed. Back in film days, the rule was overexpose print film and underexpose slide to get greater detail and richer colors. Digital appears to be like slides.
Of course we had to stop at the outlook at Olmsted Point to see (among other things) Halfdome. then we found the picnic area by Tenaya Lake. I nearly froze from the wind coming down off. After lunch, We got to Tuolomne Meadows. How to describe it - one long, vast wide meadow surrounded by gorgeous mountains, some with snow. The amazing part is it is all at 8000 ft elevation! We walked to Soda Springs - only one half mile but, did I mention 8000 ft and that we're both senior citizens in many places?
Eventually back at the car, we worked our way out of the park by about 5pm. Showed our receipt and said goodbye to the nice rangers at the gate. Since that was at Tioga Pass, Nick announced "now we're in the Eastern Sierras" Then we made the drive down - the steep, curvy, drive down. Stopped a couple of times, esp when we could get out and make snowballs. Gorgeous, just gorgeous all the way down. We stopped for a couple of minutes to check out the famous Mobil Station in Lee Vining - home of the Whoa Nellie Deli. We expect to eat there later on. On the way down to Bishop, saw beautiful color on the mountains. We hadn't considered that sunset would be earlier on this side of the mountains (you know, the
east, so mountains are blocking it, etc.).
I have semifigured out how to do pictures here. I have to upload to Picassa which has limited storage. I don't want to deal with that, so you're going to have to look on Facebook. I'm still sorting out how I review them here on the Netbook. I don't like that the editing actually changes the original on my disk. like messing with a negative. so cropping, lighting improvements, etc isn't happening.
I've tried following a tip I found in the Blog help area, so comments might work - who knows. I managed to post one, so maybe it's not my blog specifically. sigh
Tomorrow Independence and Manzanar - I plan to pack tissues.
© 2010 Esther A. Heller