Friday, July 19, 2013

THE Trip, THE Encore' :: Groveland to El Portal, A Drive Through the East Side of Yosemite National Park.

Copyright 2013, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

April 20, 2013,  NOTE THE DATE!  Reflections is almost 3 months behind the real time visits.

This post is graphics heavy, again, ya, you have been warned again.

We will have 4 days to investigate and visit Yosemite National Park and surrounds.  This day, we start late after resting a bit from THE drive in on 49 and 120.  We decide to drive into the park and start our visit, knowing full well we will have to come back a time or two.  Also knowing full well that parts of the park are still closed due to snow pack.  We hear the rivers are running strong and may be close to the peak for this spring, that makes me happy!  LOL  We will drive to about 6,216 feet (going over and coming back), gaining about 2400 feet in the process.  We will see snow up there at 6,216 feet.  We drive 120 east to the Big Oak Flat Entrance, then Big Oak Flat Road to the intersection of 140 the El Portal Road.  We take 140 west for a few miles past El Portal, turn around and head back the same route.  This covers somewhat over 100 miles round trip.

Before we even enter the park the beauty is breathtaking:

But, Mother Nature sometimes clears the playing fields, or in this case, the trees, with fire. Sometimes the rangers and the National Park Service do controlled burns.  Not sure which case this might be, but, it must have been some fire. Really cleared the hills, eh?

This is Half Dome (with the remnants of snow, middle of the photo, in the background).  You can hike the dome if your inclinations lean that way.  Nope, we did not!

Sorry, not sure the name of this lovely valley. It is very long and narrow and yes, at the end - -

Let's let Sony Too zoom.  Ah ha, a water fall.

On 140 , the Merced River was flowing quite nicely from the snow melt.

This water fall was flowing strongly as well, by August, many of the water falls in Yosemite will be little more than a trickle.

Rocks, boulders, walls of solid rock, the size, amazes me, befuddles me, astonishes me.  Takes my breath away, every time!

More rocks, boulders, rushing water, roaring down the Merced River, noisy!

I found wild flowers, the full versions are over at Reflection's Flora and Fauna.  (Teaser photos follow!  LOL)

This last water fall is at Cascade Creek, the sun was bright, blindingly so, there were shadows, which made shooting a photo of these lovely falls difficult, but, they are too pretty NOT to share.  Be sure to look way at the top of the photo, yes, the falls start way up there.

While taking photos of the wildflowers, and contemplating a hike which we ended up ditching (due to the time of the day, and the distance involved), we chatted with some other visitors to the area, they were more or less locals, and they told us about Hetch Hetchy.  They told us just enough to peak our interest levels to the point that the next day we would go investigating.  It was more wild driving and more water falls and so worth it!



Karen said...

Wow... what beautiful photos you took! I especially love the "zoomed" waterfall. Breathtaking!

Lynne Carothers said...

Oh My! I literally gasped when I saw Half Dome. How I love that mountain! I did climb to the top in years past.


I followed your link to the video of the Half Dome climb and was surprised to see so many people! It wasn't that way ... way back when. If I was healthy enough, I would do it again. But ... alas.

Thanks for the walk down memory lane.