Monday, April 28, 2008

Another exciting trip to Yosemite

Being in the bay area puts us in close proximity to Yosemite National Park. We both absolutely love the place. Infact our trips to the place have always been special.

The very first time we went there, we hit the park during perfect weather and full waterfalls. And since we did venture on one of the less frequented hikes, we also had a not-so-desired bear encounter that left us a little bit unsettled.

Our second trip to the place was during fall and the fall colors had us going ga-ga over the place. Fall in Yosemite was definitely beautiful.

So it was no wonder that when we set off friday evening for another trip we were absolutely impatient with excitement and what the place had in store for us.

It was an uneventful drive for the first couple of hours except for a long stretch when there were loads of white and purple wildflowers along the road. Till we were closer to the park and suddenly S hit the brakes - there were 4 deer on the road. And when it comes to wildlife the rule here is you wait for it to pass and you don't disturb them, so no horns either. This first sighting had us invigorated suddenly, we sat up and started looking around for more wildlife.

But soon it was dark and we pretty much gave up on seeing anything else. S was tired, he had not eaten for a long time either. We switched and I took the driver's seat. Very soon we were in the park but our camp was still some distance away. It was already dark and a windy road, I was driving slowly. Suddenly the head lights fell on a big brown creature on the other side of the road - a big black bear (Yep, I wrote it right - the bears in Yosemite are called black bears but they are brown in color). I hit the brakes, we looked at it in wonder, we waited for it to cross. I was about to start again when lo behold! we see 2 cubs following the mama bear. They were tiny, very tiny. Definitely not more than a month old. The sow looked back to make sure her cubs made it safely across the road. And as soon as they did, the party disappeared in the woods, while we sat there gaping in awe. All this happened in just 30-40 seconds, we did not get a chance to capture the moment in our camera. We looked at each other though, and smiled - thats a nice start.

The rest of the weekend was spent hiking to lakes, waterfalls etc. and picnicing in meadows. But as I look back, that split second bear sighting the very first night was definitely the highlight of our trip.


Pandits said...

u'r increasing the business at yosemite ;). good description.

we r headed to zion next month. any tips?

- ameya

Pooja Aggarwal said...


Zion was our first national park. Loved it. It can be pretty hot in summer though.

The Virgin river at Temple of Sinnawawa (??) is lovely. People hike to the narrows - hike in the river. You can do that (long hike - 2 days) or you can just do an up-down hike in the river and come back the same day.

Actually - it is one of things on my to-do list - hike the Zion narrows. But you have to make sure there are no flash flood warnings.

Other than that, weeping rock was good also. Angel's landing is a difficult hike, not for the faint at heart but is supposed to provide excellent views.

Pandits said...

thank you.

we'll head there.