Day 29 – Sunday, July 28 (Start of Week 5!)

Mike left us before breakfast this morning to head back to San Francisco, so we were just three again.

IMG_3791

Toby and Aytan with Uncle Mikey before he left us to head back to SanFran

After yesterday’s exhausting hike, we decided to just drive through Yosemite a bit today, stopping a few times for some amazing photos (see below).  At one point we stopped and saw what looked like a painting in front of us… with incredible views of Half Dome to the left, and several waterfalls to the right (including Vernal Falls, which we climbed yesterday), and granite mountains as far as the eye could see.  No photos could capture the truly awesome nature and scale of the views in front of us, but that didn’t stop me from taking enough photos to fill up a small SD card (fortunately I have a 16GB card with me).

We left the park around 1pm, after 2-3 hours of sightseeing, with the goal of making it to Kings Canyon National Park, and then on to Giant Sequoia National Park.  But by mid-late afternoon, after a stop for lunch, we decided to find a hotel in Fresno rather than risk getting to Kings Canyon and not being able to find a campground.  So I sit here writing this on our bed in the Best Western Plus Fresno Inn, after a refreshing shower.  We will soon grab a bite to eat, and Aytan and I might catch a movie.  Then tomorrow it’s on to Kings Canyon and Giant Sequoia national parks.

IMG_4564

Through the mid-morning haze: Half Dome in the center background, with El Capitan in front to the left.

IMG_4587

Part of Yosemite Valley, with Half Dome to the left. At the bottom center is Vernal Falls, where we hiked yesterday, which puts the scale in perspective (see yesterday’s post for pix of Vernal Falls).

IMG_4600

The very top of Half Dome, as seen through my telephoto lens. If you click on the photo and view it full-size, you should be able to see two people standing on the top left corner (seriously).

IMG_4641

The view from Glacier Point, more than 3,000 feet down to Curry Village below.