09 December 2010

Yosemite 2010 | Bridalveil Fall

18 September 2010
We headed back to Yosemite. I hadn't been there since Chris & (a different) Amber came in August of 2008. It's a trip we were all really excited to make. Amber & I were sure it was going to be strenuous. So we took a "before" picture outside of Starbucks before we hit the road. I suppose we thought it was as close to refreshed as we were going to get.

The drive was exactly how I like my drives: scenic and smooth. The sun rose above the hills of our golden state. And (thanks to their tour guide) Adam & Amber knew exactly why it's called the Golden State. Our guidebook advised a strategic planning of our last gas stop, to best avoid getting ripped off near the park. We stopped at a 7-11 for gas and a loaf of bread and to begin our ascent.

Stop number one was a bust. We were turned away from our inn. I don't know when 3 PM check ins became the industry standard, but I would like to go on the record as saying I dislike it. I mean this wasn't particularly horrible because our room was safe until 8 at night or something. But still, it was annoying.

Back on the road, losing cell reception, smelling fresh air, we were close. And then we hit traffic. It didn't really make sense, as we had seen few cars along the way. I mean there are always people heading to Yosemite. But traffic had been typical of a Saturday in the middle of September, until we were almost right outside of the park. It was inexplicable, until one of the sharper eyed in our bunch said "are those horses?" And indeed they were.

See them?

See them now?

Told you.

I think there was some kind of pioneer days festival / chili cook off combo happening out in Groveland. It slowed us down and probably got us paced just right for the scenery. From there it was a slow, winding trip into the park. We were itching to (eat) hike. And so we did, first sanitizing and eating tuna, then walking up a waterfall that had been dry the last time we were there. It was really slick and I didn't go all the way up. I had a water bottle, a camera and no pockets, which really only left me with one hand to scurry. And if you've ever scurried, you know it takes two hands, or at least some help. Adam was helping Amber and Jesse had already relegated me to pariah status. Maybe if I were a stranger, he would have cared. But as I was just me, he left and didn't look back.

I stayed near the bottom and I was okay with that. I made friends with a geologist from LA who also decided not to climb. I learned a little about rocks. We saw the waterfall swirl in the air and cast rainbows. It was relaxing and I had no complaints. Adam, Amber & Jesse came back and we descended. Jesse offered to help me down and I told him I was alone in the world. Dramatic? Indeed. But I reserve that right. Amber remembered we went hiking back when thy visited us in Vegas. We reminisced about how things were. I got sad and a little introspective. But isn't that s what hiking is for anyway?

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