It does seem greener than the last time I was up there.
Nice to have the larger photos displayed here.
What condition was the road into the park? Did you have it pretty much to yourselves?
Road was pretty bumpy but just needs a grader to run up it really. Putting the boot down a little allowed us to glide over the corrugations (though a couple of the corners were taken a little like this as a reault!
Looking back I think that one of my favourite stops was, again, Yosemite. On our first day we had stayed outside the park at a lovely little place to the south (Narrow Gauge Inn) which benefitted from a lovely deck to the rear:
Soon after our arrival we headed in to the park and travelled in to explore the Mariposa Grove which has been redone incredibly well in recent times.
We'd gotten out just as a large storm rolled in and made it back to base for the evening. Next morning we were up early and made our way to Glacier Point; being luck enough to see this along the way. I had been travelling to North America for 6 or 8 years before I'd seen my first bear so the kids were lucky indeed to get to sit and observe this baby after only a week or so on the continent!
(Sorry - not the most amazing photo but a great spot off in the trees nonetheless!)
Making our way onwards to Glacier Point it was apparent that it wasn't the most amazing day but I was still gutted to arrive to discover this view:
However, 15 minutes later it all cleared away and the majesty opened up:
After that it was a dash down in to the valley where we parked up for the day before exploring on the bus. Unfortunately this was a dreadful experience with huge lines to get on the bus. Worse was to come when we finally made it on with the driver insisting that we stood in the rear doorway before caning it round the corners causing us to hold on for our lives! Unfortunately when he pulled up to another stop the doors opened without warning and Dan's arm was trapped in the opening mechanism with the door putting ever and ever greater pressure on his little arm. No amount of pushing, pulling or kicking the door had any effect nor did shouting to the driver for him to help. It was only when I shouted something along the lines of 'if you don't do something I am going to come up there and sort you out (!)' did he hit the override. Unbelievable. Luckily Dan is made of stern stuff and the massive black bruise up his arm had started to subside a little by the time we travelled home a week or so later. Urgh. Best forgotten and lesson learned... leave buses for at home and stick to the car next time!!
Anyway that evening a lovely little cabin here:
Next morning out over the Tioga Pass and an early evening meal at the Whoa Nellie Deli which I think is popular around here. This isn't a bad snack for a 12 year old I think!
As I sat eating my own lunch we all spoke about how we had loved Yosemite and what we had coming up over the next few days. Bodie, then Death Valley, Joshua Tree and onward to Six Flags north of LA; everyone was very excited as this was the part of the trip that the kids had been looking forward to the most. It was at this point I checked my phone to learn of the chaos unfolding at Death Valley and Joshua Tree. "Why are you suddenly grumpy", I was asked. "No reason", I answered, as I wandered over to invest in a large map of the south western states from the other side of the store. Oh boy, how do I explain this, I thought... :s
And the amazing thing is that the damage was so severe at Death Valley that the roads have remained closed this entire time. Much of the park will open tomorrow for the first time since the storm.
Yes have been watching that. Shame to have missed the stop this year so... the plan is for us to give it another go and try again next August. Watch this space.
Maybe we could even rendezvous with you someplace and meet your wife and kids!
Like the larger photos!
Sounds good. Although may take some convincing of the other half as she finds it incredibly unusual that I should ever have met up with anyone off the internet! She is probably right based on my experience is some cases!! :)