Thursday, October 31, 2013

The Grand Yosemite

Yosemite Valley has been quite the adventure in more way than one. 
We arrived at the park late Tuesday afternoon. Ben has been so excited from the moment we arrived, Yosemite is one of his favorites and he's been waiting a long time to visit. 
We checked into Curry Village and headed over to the visitor center. As luck would have it, Ranger Shelton Johnson was on duty! Ranger Johnson is one of our favorite, as well as one of the most influential Rangers of our time. He has been a voice for the park service ( Ken Burns: The National Parks: Americas Best Idea) as well as reviving the history of the Buffalo Soliders. We chatted with him for a while about his 25 plus years with the park service, our trip and how important it is for Americas to visits the Parks. 
We left the visitor center, went to grab dinner before settling in for the night and the battery of our car died. After and hour or so on the phone with AAA we discovered the park has it's own garage (due to its remote location). A nice gentleman came and gave us a jump. The next morning the car barely started so we spent most of the morning driving out of the park into the nearest town to buy a new battery. 
We returned, slightly irritated, but ready to start over! We decided to camp on our second night. We walked around the park and spend the afternoon learning the history and enjoying the views. 
Today we woke up early, checked into the historic Ahwahnee hotel before hiking up the mountain Glacier Point. We enjoyed beautiful views of the valley, half Dome and El Capitan. 
Tonight after a long hike, we had a nice dinner at the hotel and relaxed. 
Tomorrow we'll visit Mariposa Grove before leaving for Kings Canyon. 

With Ranger Shelton Johnson

Ben and El Capitan

Our tent cabin at Curry village. 

Inside a replica village of the native Americans that once lived in the valley.

View of the valley from atop the mountain, on our way to Glacier point. 

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