Discover Yosemite

The Best National Park in America

Me, Colin and Cody (my friends) visited Yosemite National Park in early September of 2015.  Like the grand canyon, pictures just cannot describe the monumental greatness that you will see in person.  The valley is green and beautiful, the cliffs are extremely high up, and the rounded granite mountains are more magnificent than you could imagine.  Scroll through this page to find some key information you may be looking for, a little about our trip, and my advice for those interested in scaling Half Dome. 

Monumental Views

Glacier Point is one of the most important stops on your trip.  This is where you can see the impressive panorama of the entire park.  The valleys plunging below, waterfalls glistening in the distance and the iconic 'Half Dome' towering in the center.  This is the point of the park where you can really appreciate the scale of your surroundings.  Walking up to Glacier Point is much like peering into the Grand Canyon for the first time.  You will revert to child-like amazement, wondering how places like this can still exist on our planet.    

Epic cliff thing

Heavens Above

Glacier Point is also the best place to look at the stars.  It is open all night so don't forget to bring your full frame DSLR... if you have one 🙁 

<---- I can't figure out the name of this epic cliff-overlook thing, but trust me, it's epic... You're also not allowed to go on it, I don't know who this punk kid thinks he is..(It's Cody). If I have to give you advice on how to get out on it, wait until fewer people are looking, and then hop over there like a quick little rabbit. But make sure you have mountain goat-like footing because it is WAYY higher up than this picture portrays. Let's describe it in terms of comparison: The cliff Cody's standing on is 500 feet higher than the Burj Khalifa to the valley floor below..

Half Dome Hike (Legendary)

Higher than it looks

The cliff we are standing on at the top of half dome is taller than the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the Sears (Willis) tower in Chicago, and the Statue of Liberty in New York...Combined... in relation to the valley floor below. After this long strenuous hike, you may wish you had brought your parachute for a quicker descent..

 

Danger is a good thing:

The ascent up half dome is no joke.  It is super steep.  Not a ladder or stairs, your feet are just climbing up flat, slippery natural granite slabs that make up the mountain structure as your hands try to grip that old rusty cable drilled into the rock.  There are wooden boards loosely stapled to the steel poles that you can rest on to catch your breath.  If you are alone there like we were, you will have no one in front or behind you to help push you up or save you from a fall.  So make sure you upper body strength is up to snuff.  We both said we would never let one of our family members try to climb that thing alone (remember this is also after you hike for 6 hours).  Janky/precarious is a good way to describe the cable climb...  These are all things that make it fun though, and what drew us to the hike in the first place.  Once you're at the top, the views are phenomenal, you can see miles in all directions as you take in the panorama of one of the greatest national parks in America. 

Vernal Falls: A good spot to take a dip along the way.

Nevada Falls

The video of our journey to the top

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