Yosemite National Park

Tuesday 7th October

We slept beside the roaring waters of the Merced River last night (on the top floor of the hotel in a very comfortable bed).  We set out to explore Yosemite by car initially and drove south into the Park to Wawona. The scenery is simply spectacular.  The sheer clliffs, rock faces, creeks, vegetation and wildlife are just fantastic.  We went into the Mariposa Grove and walked for a couple of hours amongst the giant Sequoia trees.  It has been a dream of mine since primary school to see these magnificent redwoods and I have finally achieved my goal.  They certainly did not disapoint.  I was able to walk around them, through them, beside them and krink my neck gazing up at them – WOW.  Geoff was able to eventually drag me away and we drove onto Glacier Point.  The scenery here was breathtaking.  Views of Half Dome and the Bridalveil Fall were amazing and just to top things off we got to see a black bear.  Just when we thought things could not get any better, things changed – the smoke that we had noticed in the valley below turned out to be a wildfire and as we drove within about 10 minutes of our hotel (after a long day of exploring) all of the traffic was being turned around and we had to take a 3 hour detour to our hotel.  We did not get back until 9pm, but we did get to see some deer along the way as well as some foolish drivers.

We watched the fire burn out of control during the night.imageimage


I now know that there are Mountain Lions in Yosemite – although they are very rare I thought that the warning by the National Parks Service was interesting – it read “What should you do if you encounter a Mountain Lion- Never approach one, especially if it is with kittens.  Most lions will avoid confrontation, always give them a way to escape.  Don’t run, stay calm.  Hold your ground or back away slowly.  Face the lion and stand upright. Do all you can to appear larger, raise your arms.  If you have small children pick them up.  If the lion acts aggressively, wave your arms, shout and throw objects at it. The goal is to convince it that you may be dangerous.  (but how about this last comment) IF ATTACKED, FIGHT BACK!”