Touristy Yosemite

Yosemite National Park spans some 12,000 square miles in North California. Heard about it a lot, seen many photos of it, and my husband thought it will be great to end our California road trip by visiting this huge national park.

So we spent a full day there one summer day, only to find that most waterfalls that awed us in the photos are down to a trickle … some of them don’t show anything but rocks. Getting a nice picture in a lot of places are just so challenging because there were too many tourists and cars. Getting the attention of a staff at the visitor information center takes a long time, simply because there were too many people asking questions and not enough rangers to cater for everyone.

There was no clear walking map – the only map we had was the map of the whole park, but not of the trails that we could take. Or maybe there is a walking trail map … we just didn’t find it. But we specifically looked for it and couldn’t find it .. not in the visitor information center, and not at the start of the trail. And when we decided that yes, we wanted to try a short trail, there was no place to park our car.

At the end of the day, we only walked up to Bridalveil fall to see what remained of the waterfall, saw some rock formations, took photos with some giant sequoia trees, ate lunch sitting on a tree trunk because there was no bench left, and drove around the valley.

At the end of it, my husband realized that the best time to come would be spring – some time when it is NOT a school holiday … when the waterfalls gushed out lots of water from the melting snow, and when the plants were in full bloom. Other than that, give Yosemite a miss and visit Sequoia National Park instead, just south of Yosemite, for some real nature-seeking day.

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