Creating Magic

May your day be sprinkled with pixie dust

Day 6, 7 & 8: To Half Dome and Beyond! (No Kidding!) – PART TWO July 24, 2014

Filed under: Faerie Dust & Whimsy — Faerie Magic @ 7:44 am

Are you still curious?  I hope so!

Our group leader, Lindsay, a former Forest Ranger and current nature guide, informed the group that Bears had actually begun to profile cars/trucks to know which ones were the easiest to break into and had the most food …. any guesses?

SUV’s that have the window in the rear that lifts up away from the tailgate.  The Bears found from trial and error I am thinking that if they climbed on the roof of the SUV and jumped hard and long enough, like a two-year-old jumping on a bed, that the window would pop open and food would be hiding inside!

Well, you will be happy to know that I, in fact, did not spot one bear on my entire adventure BUT I did spot a hungry buck who had the same idea that the bears did.  I went to the Curry Village parking lot to store my personal items and discovered the buck finding some grub …

Buck Food

After storing my items and having my tent pitched at camp, I decided it was time to wander lower Yosemite and see what else I could discover.  In the not so far distance I heard the burbling of water over stones.  I followed the sound only to discover the Merced River.  A few families were swimming in the cool clear water and I decided to step into the water myself …. ahhhhhh…. WATER!

Shannon Ranger2

Hey! With this hat, courtesy of Mr. Prater, maybe one day I could be a Ranger!  I certainly look the part, don’tchathink?

Many local tourists cross the Merced River via a stone bridge located conveniently across it.  Who needs a bridge when you can tromp around IN the water!

Merced River

I spent much of my time until meeting the rest of the group hanging out in the water.  After discussing our plan of attack for the next day, we headed off to bed.  The first day of hiking would consist of a 6 mile hike to Little Yosemite Valley where we would set up camp for the night before tackling Half Dome the following day.  I thought, “6 Miles! That’s it! No problem ….” little did I know that that 6 miles would consist of hiking uphill the entire time with my 30 pound backpack totting on my back.

Raven, another intelligent scavenger who loved the Curry Village camp sites was the first one to wake me up at 5:30 a.m. the next morning crowing like the morning Rooster!  The group gathered with all of our equipment at the John Muir Trail Head, which would take us to Little Yosemite Valley base camp.

On the way about three miles into the upward climbing hike, huffing and puffing my way up the trail, we made our way near Vernal Falls.

Map

The rapid moving water over the 317 foot waterfall is beautiful to view.  We were told by our guides that although the water seemed to be abundant that it was actually low for the season as they had not received enough snow or rainfall for the year.

Vernal Falls1

One of the many flowers that benefit from the waterfall itself is a flower known as the White Bog Orchid of Yosemite Park.  The mist from the waterfall sprays the side of the trail walls of rock and this delicate miniature orchid is able to grow from the combination of sun and water.  This beauty of tiny proportions is actually often pollinated by mesquitoes in fact!  For more information on this flower you can follow this link:

White Bog Orchid

Orchid Mesquito

Well … many of you who know me well enough, know that sometimes I like to push the envelope … every so often … what is the point of seeing Vernal Falls from a distance … let’s take a closer look shall we!

Over Falls Shannon

Shannon on the rocks please!

Did I say there were only two parts to this story?  Hmmm…. apparently there are three and no one bothered to tell me ahead of time.  We haven’t even made it to base camp for heaven’s sake.  Now you know by reading this story why I called it to Half Dome and Beyond …. it just keeps going and going and going …

I hope you look forward to Part Three!

Love

Shannon

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