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Wanderlust cured’s Travel Diary

Thursday, 22 Oct 2009

Location: California, USA

MapYosemite National Park

360956 G20 kms = 5224kms total
Last 2 days: 1130kms

Driving away from the coast revealed more and more farmland with fruits being the main crops. It turned dark quickly as we cruised along Hwy152 towards Yosemite. J still had lots of driving hours in him and there was 5 in front of us, so drive we did. By the time we got to the last town before the park it was time for a snooze. An elderly man greeted us in the fairgrounds of a quaint little town and we were the only people there. He told us stories about the stars, about the man who killed the last wolf and grizzly in Yosemite (who is thankfully now in Federal Prison) and I think he was just happy to have people to talk to, his last name meant Black Wolf and I think he was probably native with his long grey hair tied neatly at his back.

6:30am is my usual wake up time and this morning was no different. I took to the showers and found that to save money if you happen upon a high tech washroom with electricity, I take the $6 toaster, bagel and cream cheese and I can have a warm, cheap breakfast after my shower. Perfect! Off we drove into Yosemite.

Getting into the National Park was gorgeous, tall mountains covered in shrubs with a few lime green pines growing up. A big river ran right alongside the road, it was dodging around all the rocks that Yosemite is so famous for. Its dry this time of year here, their summer is quite hot but it just had rain so we were greeted with fast flowing rivers and waterfalls off the giant rocks. Take a look at the photos, they barely give you an understanding of the majesty of these rocks as they truly are awe-inspiring. We took a drive up to Sentinel Dome for a hike as it was one of the highest points to get to and sounded like it would have been a great view. After the first set of road works we didnít see the turn as they had taken all the signs down, so went 11 miles out of the way when we wondered why we were going down instead of up. Back we went to be stuck in another set of road works, this lot on another road and taking almost an hour to get through. The thing is, once you were Ďescortedí through the road works you could see that it was all double lane, except for one hole which you could have easily avoided in a 100 metre block-off, but instead they stopped traffic for that long and then drove them through 5 miles of great roads only to see that the road works were on a side road!! Unbelievable. It ruined my day for about 30 minutes and then I was puffing up Sentinal Dome and forgot all about it.

So much rock, its just amazing here. We climbed all the way to the top and the view was spectacular. I was above El Capitan, Yosemite Falls and could see the whole Yosemite valley floor. Turn around and I could view the snow covered mountains, more mountains of rock and vast smaller valleys. We spoke with numerous Americans up there who are all quite interested in Australia and specifically Tasmania. They are all quite friendly when your out and about.

We are now about to drive through Yosemite National Park, I started writing this at the last road works stop, but this one didnít seem to take nearly as long. We are heading towards the California/Nevada border and going into Reno, Nevada and across to Salt Lake City, Utah to eventually spent about a week in Moab! Moab is pretty much what a lot of this trip was about and its only days away.