I wish I could stay out with you," he sighs before turning for home. The next morning, I pack quickly and follow the cairns up Yosemite Point, a smooth lump of granite that looms high enough above the falls to catch the morning's first rays.
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I bask for a minute to warm my chilly fingers, then continue east along an open ridge affording degree views: On my right is the Valley, 3, feet below; to my left, the rounded mountains of the Sierra present a montage of gumdrop-shaped hills of granite. I don't meet another hiker for 4. A scant six people bask on the rock—a tiny fraction of the numbers you'd encounter on other, shorter dayhikes.
Continuing on, I travel another six miles through sun-soaked forest so dry my boots stamp puffs of dust from the trail. The afternoon's heat releases the pines' pleasant fragrance, but by the time I reach Snow Creek and the gravelly bench where I'll camp, salt and grit plaster my skin, so I strip for a bracing bath that's almost as invigorating as the scene from my tent.
Tomorrow, I'll descend into Yosemite Valley with its gridlocked parking lots and milling crowds.
Yosemite National Park: A Complete Hiker's Guide by Jeffrey P. Schaffer
But tonight, blissfully removed from the traffic, I camp at Snow Creek, a grandstand spot with the best view ever framed by nylon. Like the moon enlarged 1, times, Half Dome fills the sky above me, its circular sweep interrupted by impossible flatness. Its neighbor, Clouds Rest, contrasts Half Dome's massive plane with random bulges and ripples that look like liquid, not stone. I'd expect to be over granite by now, after admiring it all week, but I'm more mesmerized than ever. As the slanting sun turns those monoliths orange, then pink, then an ominous gray, I can't tear my gaze away.
Maybe because there's no one else here to bear witness, I watch with the eyes of 10 people. Despite working and hiking alone, Colorado-based freelancer Kelly Bastone insists she likes people. Hike it This mile shuttle hike pieces together several trails and spurs for the best views and remote campsites in and above Yosemite Valley. In the first few minutes, you'll see the shaved granite wall of El Capitan piercing the skyline. At mile 1. The upcoming 2. Top off water bottles and backtrack.
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Turn left and climb through sugar pines, contour around El Cap Gully, and take the. Backtrack and head northeast for 1. Swing north, then east to Yosemite Falls Trail 7. Turn right and hike south to end this big mile day at your second campsite 8.
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Catch the sunset glow at a nearby overlook of Yosemite Falls 9 , a high-decibel whitewater ribbon falling almost 2, feet. On day three, see the sunrise from Yosemite Point 6, feet , then continue east for four miles to North Dome 10 for a front-row view of the cleaved granite face of Half Dome see page 15 for photography tips. Hike north for 3. The last day, descend plus switchbacks over 2, feet into Tenaya Canyon Follow the north side of Tenaya Creek, pass Mirror Lake, and pick up the free park shuttle 15 back to your car.
The Way To reach the unsigned Rockslides trailhead from Yosemite Village, take the Valley Loop road west to milepost 9 and park on the right, by the metal gate. Virtually every single trail in Yosemite National Park is described in this classic guidebook, together with the scenery and natural history found along each trail.
View the soaring granite cliffs and waterfalls of Yosemite Valley, or take in the breathtaking vista from Glacier Point. Explore the impressive groves of giant sequoias and hike the spectacular, glacier-carved backcountry. The major trails leading into the park are also described in equal detail - trails in the Emigrant, Hoover, and Ansel Adams wildernesses.
Also included is the most up-to-date, topographic map available of Yosemite and vicinity, showing over miles of trails, all of them personally hiked by the author or his assistant. Select Parent Grandparent Teacher Kid at heart. Age of the child I gave this to:. Hours of Play:. Tell Us Where You Are:.
Preview Your Review. Thank you. Virtually every single trail in Yosemite National Park is described in this classic guidebook, together with the scenery and natural history found along each trail.
Yosemite National Park: A Complete Hiker''''s Guide
View the soaring granite cliffs and waterfalls of Yosemite Valley, or take in the breathtaking vista from Glacier Point. Explore the impressive groves of giant sequoias and hike the spectacular, glacier-carved backcountry.
Have you ever wondered why Yosemite Valley is so deep? How the giant sequoias acquired their present distribution? Why the vegetation changes with altitude?
How Pothole Dome got its potholes? The answers to these questions and many others are found inside this guidebook.