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Roadtrip USA: Yosemite Park

...climbing up to Nevada Falls

After the bustling city of San Francisco we head east to Yosemite Park. We departed at 5:30 AM to avoid the heavy traffic and still found a lot of cars on the Freeway. In around 4 hours we arrived in Yosemite Village and after a quick snack at the Yosemite Lodge, we went for our first trail: Lower Yosemite Falls. Unfortunately as California endures a dry period, there was no water at all. The trail is estimated at 2-3 hours on the Yosemite Park website and we casually walked it in 30 minutes.

Welcome to Yosemite Park

Welcome to Yosemite Park

Beautiful vistas on they way to Yosemite Village

Beautiful vistas on they way to Yosemite Village

Beautiful vistas on they way to Yosemite Village

Beautiful vistas on they way to Yosemite Village

Beautiful vistas on they way to Yosemite Village

Beautiful vistas on they way to Yosemite Village

Driving through the woods

Driving through the woods

Driving through the woods

Driving through the woods

Deer browsing at Yosemite Fall's trailhead

Deer browsing at Yosemite Fall’s trailhead

Just too cute

Just too cute

Yosemite Falls short trail

Yosemite Falls short trail

Who can see the face?

Who can see the face?

Dry Yosemite Fall's

Comfortable walkways along this trail

Comfortable walkways along this trail

A bridge over the "water"

A bridge over the “water”

After this disappointing trail, we looked for something more strenuous. We found: Nevada Falls trail with the option to take a shortcut at Vernan Falls. We wanted to quit even before reaching Vernan Falls but made it there and than even made it up to the top. We took the steeper, but shorter Mist Trail up and hiked down John Muir Trail. We wouldn’t want to hike down Mist Trail because of the steep and sandy steps. It’s around 8 miles long and 2000 ft in elevation gain … and the same in loss on the way back. It’s doable in sneakers, but next time we bring some proper gear and a larger bottle of water. We resorted to drinking delicious water from the river. I don’t know if it’s safe, but we didn’t catch anything.

The relaxing part of Nevada Fall's trail

The relaxing part of Nevada Falls trail

Vernan Fall's carrying at least some water

Vernan Falls carrying at least some water

Nevada Fall's trail

Nevada Falls trail

Nevada Fall's trail

Nevada Falls trail

Nevada Fall's ... nearly there

Nevada Falls … nearly there

Nevada Fall's ... we did it

Nevada Falls … we did it

View over Yosemite Village

View over Yosemite Village

Descend to Yosemite Village

Descend to Yosemite Village

The descend took ages and without water and food it felt even longer. We finally arrived at the trailhead after around 5 hours and the Snickers & Coke, we bought at the bus stop, were among the greatest food we had in the US…

We had a reservation for Yosemite Lodge, priced at $310, but cancelled it in favor of a motel on our way to Death Valley. So we had another 4 hours on the road before falling in bed in a crappy Best Western Plus Motel in Lone Pine, California.

Driving over Tioga Pass

Driving over Tioga Pass

Just outside of Yosemite Park

Just outside of Yosemite Park