Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Day #23: Valley Girl

Today's Route: Wawona Campground in Yosemite National Park to North Pines Campground in Yosemite National Park (30 miles)
Total Trip Miles: 934

Today is the day we ride into Yosemite Valley!

We had a 2,000 ft climb out of the Wawona Campground. But after that, it was all downhill into the valley. And then once we were in the valley, it was all flat riding!

On our downhill, we rode through a tunnel that was 0.8 miles long. When we emerged from the tunnel, there was an outlook off to the side of the road. From that outlook, we could see the valley for the first time! Although there was a river flowing down in the valley, the trees looked like an even more magnificent river flowing through the valley.

At the lookout -- our first glimpse of Yosemite Valley.

Shirley, illuminated by god-light, with the valley in the distance.

As we rode into the valley, we were in complete awe. The walls of the valley are far more magnificent than I could have ever imagined. And the waterfalls were gorgeous, too!

Yosemite Falls.

We met up with my brother (BJ) and his girlfriend (Lilia) outside the Wilderness Center. Right next door was the Post Office, where we had mailed a box of boots and other supplies via General Delivery (refer to the Didja Know About General Delivery? post).

We pick up our box of boots, mailed via General Delivery.

Then we rode along the bike path to drop off our bikes and gear at our campsite.

There are twelve miles of paved bike paths in the valley. Getting around by bicycle is really the way to go, as parking can be hard to come by.

We hadn't seen a whole lot of bicycles during the first 900 miles of our trip. But there are bicycles everywhere in Yosemite Valley. It's bicycle heaven!

Riding along the most beautiful bike path in the world.

After dropping off our gear, BJ, Lilia, and I hiked to the bottom of the Upper Yosemite Falls, while Alex explored the valley. We hiked just over 3 miles and gained some decent elevation. It felt great to use leg muscles that I haven't been able to exercise via bicycling.

We hiked to the base of the Upper Yosemite Falls.

After the hike, we drove to Glacier Point, where we made dinner and watched the sunset. The drive traced a good part of the route that Alex and I had ridden earlier this morning.

This was our first car ride in over three weeks. It felt strange riding in a car. One thing I can say for certain is that the beauty of a route is far more stunning when traveled by bicycle; all of the senses are engaged!

Oh, and we saw another bear on the side of the road on the way up to Glacier point!

I'm really loving Yosemite; it is definitely my favorite National Park. While it's difficult to choose a favorite place at a Yosemite, the view from Glacier Point is pretty darn spectacular.

Having dinner at Glacier Point.

It was really neat to peek into the valley down below and see the tiny lights of the various buildings and villages. It was also neat to see lights on El Capitan -- the lights belong to climbers up on the wall, bivvying for the night. How exciting!

Half Dome and me, at sunset.

I think become a valley, like...and stay here forever.


  1. You will have to go to this park again and take me there... Park looks so beautiful from your photos.

    1. This park is amazing. I'll come back anytime. Just imagine how beautiful the photos would look if they were taken by a real photographer with a decent camera. :)

  2. Gorgeous! And great you could see BJ and Lilia! Jim and I were just saying that when we return to the States we want to go to Yosemite and the Grand Canyon. We are seeing beautiful places in Europe but have never visited some of the beautiful sights in our own country! (Did I give you my blog address?

    1. You and your family would love Yosemite and The Grand Canyon! (Please send my your blog address, Kelly. I have it bookmarked on my laptop back home, but I don't have it bookmarked on my ipad here with me.)

  3. Sure! It's


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