Published: May 23rd 2012May 22nd 2012
Another early start, mainly to try and avoid the heat in the middle of the day.
Breakfast in our rooms at 7am and off to Yosemite Village by 7-30am.
The plan was to go to the visitor centre to find out if the road we needed out of Yosemite on Friday was open a (very high mountain crossing that is snowed up until this month). We arrived before 8am only to find the visitor centre did not open until 9am. So quick change of plan and went for walk to the Lower part of Yosemite Falls before it got too busy.
The noise from the falls is tremendous when you get close, from the sheer volume of water and the height it is falling.
Returning to the village the Visitor Centre was open and we were able to establish that the road we wanted was open (free from snow) but there was some roadworks on it which might cause us some delay.
As the day went on the temperature slowly rose but today only reached 84 degrees farenheit which seemed cooler than yesterday.
After a swift lunch (burgers) and some essential shopping we decided to
go back to the car and travel to Mariposa Grove to see the giant Sequoias.
After a walking tour of the village (we got lost) we eventually made it back to car and set off.
Although still in the Yosemite National Park we had to drive some 40 miles to get to Mariposa Grove only to find the car park was full and so had to back track some 5 miles back up the road to catch a shuttle bus back to the Grove.
Some of the trees in this forest were estimated to be 1,800 years old and huge. Vern and Annette who had been there some 10 years before were surprised at the amount of fire and storm damage there had been and the number of fallen trees.
We did a circular walk and looked at some of the more well known trees, The Grizzly Giant, California Tunnel Tree, The Bachelor and Three Graces and the Faithful Couple.
During the circular walk we saw several ground squirrels (very similar to our grey squirrel but much smaller) and perhaps the highlight was 3 female Mule deer with large ears. They were very close to
the trail and seemed totally unconcerned by our presence. There were all sorts of brightly coloured birds which we need to look up and huge swallowtail butterflies.
I am still hoping to see a bear or two but I think they have better things to do than pose for tourists!
We have just had a delicious pizza and beer for supper and are attempting some washing in the laundry facitities which are really poor as half are out of order. Still it gives time for some blogging while I am waiting for a dryer that works.
The landscape here in the valley is really awsome and I can see where Ansel Adams got his inspiration from and I have tried some black and white photos today.
We hope to get to Mirror lake tomorrow before it gets too hot.
There are more photos below