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Yosemite National Park (USA)

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Country: USA / Country Region: California / World Region: North America

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      24.04.2012 09:18
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      Love it so much!

      **Overview**
      Yosemite has to be one of my favourite national parks of all time. Lying in the Californian wilderness, the area consumed by the park is enormous. The park is beautiful with waterfalls, rock formations, lakes and plenty of walks. You might be joined by the occasional black bear or mountain lion but fortunately, particularly in high season, it tends to be quite busy so you shouldn't have too many problems.

      We visited Yosemite from Monterey for a one-night trip which is about a 6 hour drive. We arrived in the park as it was getting dark and 2 hours later in the pitch black we rolled up to Curry Village to see Half-Dome glistening in the moonlight. The snow had fallen on the ground and it was like a scene out of a Christmas card.....in April.


      **Camp Curry**

      We didn't need tyre chains for the snow but it is worth having a look to see if you do, the main routes were clear it was just the village itself that was full of snow. As it was April, chances are you might need snow tyres/chains in the winter.

      "Village" is probably overstating this large camping area but perhaps we didn't use all of the amenities. We only ate one meal which was breakfast in the vastly overpriced Yosemite lodge which is adjacent to Curry Village. Breakfast buffet was something horrendous like $25.

      The main hiking trails to Mirror Lake and Nevada Falls begin just a few minutes outside of Curry Village and a short drive or slightly longer walk can see you at El Capitan for some climbing or sight seeing of Yosemite falls.

      The tent-cabins are exactly that, really basic, think "tents" with a dressing table and a light. Not glamping, still exposed to the cold (which it was in April, I heartily recommend Vodka for keeping warm and getting an excellent sleep.. not so great the day after though...! Seriously, take something warm and a hat, my Vodka-free-friends were freezing).

      The bathrooms are a short walk away from the cabins and the cabins we stayed in were on quite uneven ground so bear that in mind if you have access-needs. The bathrooms had the bear lockers right outside which was good to deter bears away from the tent-cabins, but I often wondered if Yogi and his mates would be having a feast outside the bathrooms when I popped to the loo in the middle of the night. Of course..they weren't! We didn't see any bears at all in Yosemite but we walked popular trails with lots of people.

      The trek to Nevada Falls was hard work and we didn't quite make it, but the views and scenery were breathtaking, one of the nicest places I've ever visited. We saw the famous half dome in the sunshine and had lots of adventures on steep cliffs in the snow.

      On the whole I thought Curry Village was great value, very basic but clean and there was no overcrowding in bathrooms, but Yosemite Lodge breakfast was pretty busy and I'm not sure I'd want to stay there. Depends how cold I am.

      There was so much more to Yosemite that we didn't get to see as we were only there for one day. Definitely worth a visit and Camp Curry was fun too.

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        03.12.2008 21:37

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        Words just cannot convey the shear majesty of the place; Visit Yosemite and see for yourself!

        However you try to describe Yosemite, words just cannot do it enough justice. This is a place which gets into your very soul and stays there! (the majesty of Yosemite Valley is quite something to behold!).

        Yosemite has abundant wildlife, towering majestic waterfalls (best seen between May and July IMO), shear three thousand foot granite cliffs (some almost vertical), each with it's own individual character (and name!), lichen covered rocks, dogwood blosoms, douglas firs standing tall in the valley and on the mountains.
        The river Merced winding it's way serenely though the valley's meadows (meadows are all shades of green) and rushing through the misty shaded canyons.

        Yosemite valley provides varied accomodation, from the Curry village tent cabins, and Log Cabins at Yosemite village, through to the charming Ahwahnee Hotel, which fits in perfectly with the character of the Valley.

        There is lots to do for recreation, with hiking the trails (take plenty of water with you!), rock climbing, canoing, fishing, nature study, photography, cycling, and skiing in winter (there is a free shuttle bus service too!).
        Outside of yosemite valley itself, there is 'Little Yosemite' (a smaller version of the main valley), and the Tioga Road will take you to the beautiful Tuolomne meadows, and Lake Tenaya (named after a famous Ahwahneechee Indian Chief).

        I thoroughly recomend a visit to this incredible place (one day is not enough!).

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        17.11.2008 18:50

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        Must see

        I have to say that on my recent round the world trip Yosemite was the most beautiful place I was able to visit. The park is reached by a long road with trees either side. The start of the experience is when you reach the end of the tunnel that leads into the centre of the park and you are greeted with the most stunning view (careful not to drive off the cliff!) The guide's talk of staying in the park but we stayed in a travelodge 15 miles out and it only took us about an hour to get there and back. The walks in the park can be quite strenuous as the paths leed up to the very high waterfalls. It is worth taking your time and getting up there though as the views are spectacular.The centre in the park is also interesting as it gives quite an honest history of the park and how it came to be inhabited by californians.

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        10.07.2005 09:11
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        This is the coolest place in the world. Blows away Grand Canyon, Glacier, Yellowstone, Tetons, Casc

        I have been to several parks out East and every national park West of the Mississippi and several state parks and national monuments also. This is without a doubt the coolest place in the United States and probably in the whole world. If you only see one national park in your lifetime, Yosemite is the one to see. There are so many breathtaking views and different wonders to gaze at in awe or photograph. Park the car or RV, get out and stroll around--especially around Bridalveil falls (just a short walk from the car to the base of the waterfall) and also around Yosemite falls, the fifth hightest waterfall in the world. Take the road to Glacier Point. This 30 min drive is worth it thousands of times over when you see the views you get from Glacier Point. Simply incredible. There is nothing that tops Yosemite in the United States if you like to sight see, photograph or just marvel at really cool stuff. There isn't a more scenic National Park than Yosemite. This is one park you will not regret visiting even if you have to walk from Iowa. No kidding.

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          23.07.2004 21:24
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          Thanks to the efforts of John Muir, a Scotsman who spent most of his life in the wilderness areas of the Sierra Nevada, congress developed the National park system, So in 1878, Yellowstone became the first National Park followed by Sequoia and Yosemite in 1890. It does not need any imagination to work out why. We visited Yosemite during a tour of California, stopping at all the usual places, LA, Grand Canyon etc. and we drove to Yosemite from Las Vegas which should have taken about 4 hours, but wanting to see as much as possible we took a longer route through Death Valley and consequently it was starting to get dark when we first saw the signs to Yosemite National Park. We decided that having about a quarter of a tank of petrol we would wait until we got to the village and fill up in the morning ? mistake number 1. We entered the Park boundary and the first sign we saw was Yosemite Village 70 miles?..arggh if you are going to run out of petrol anywhere you don?t want it to be in the pitch black, down a well maintained but very small road in the middle of bear country!!!!! Anyway with a bit of luck, a lot of turning the engine off going down hill and petrol fumes we made it into the village. We were staying in Curry Village, which is the cheapest of the on site accommodation and is basic in the extreme, you get a mission style tent with an iron bed and a chair and it was more expensive than the hotel we stayed at in Nevada. There are a number of accommodation options in the village, from traditional camping grounds to lodge style hotel rooms to 4 star ?colonial? hotels. A friend of mine and said that Colonial is code for ?in need of repair? but I can not comment from personal experience. All details of the accommodation are available (with an online booking facility) at www.y
          osemitepark.com. The first thing we were warned about on arrival is the bears, you are advised not to leave anything in the car that will attract them, so food and cosmetics were a problem and staying in the tents you could not leave anything there either so you can hire a bear proof safe. This we did then promptly forgot that we had done it and we were well out of the park 4 days later when we realised our lager was still there. For the record we did not see any bears, but we certainly heard them and there were scratch marks on some of the tents. Curry village is serviced by camp site shower and toilet blocks and here was mistake number 2. We arrived in Yosemite on Labor Day weekend, it was packed and you had to queue for about half an hour to get a shower. The following morning, is a time I will never forget. We woke up, not exactly peaceful solitude as the place was packed, but it was a glorious day and having arrived in the pitch black we had seen nothing the night before and we poked our heads out of the door and the sight was breathtaking, awe inspiring, we had been lifted out of our mundane lives and deposited in heaven. We couldn?t wait to get exploring, so we had a quick breakfast and drove up to sequoia grove. The great thing about Yosemite, is the majority of visitors do not walk and it is so vast that you can easily get away from the crowds Sequoia grove is an area of very large and very old redwood trees, it used to have an official road running through it and one of the large trees had a large hole cut into it so the carriages could drive through. The tree itself is now dead but it still makes a great photo op. The size of these trees is something I really can not describe I was completely dwarfed by them, not hard at the best of times but it was amazing. Yosemite is also home to the Ansel Adams studio, for those of you who have not heard
          of him he is an incredible landscape photographer. We consider ourselves as ok amateurs and were delighted to find a gallery there and the professional photographers offer a free camera walk. We booked onto this really eagerly, and was one of the most interesting couple of hours ever, we did not walk very far, just into one of the meadows where you can see half dome (one of the mountain faces) in the distance and they then helped us to use options on the camera that we did not know how to, how to set perspective and distance and all that sort of thing. The results were incredible and I am really sorry there is no photo option to show you, but they are all analogue pictures and neatly displayed in albums. At this point we were so relaxed and enjoying ourselves so much we extended our stay by a couple of days. Waking up on the Tuesday morning was a completely different experience, silence, you could hear the birds (and the bears) everyone else had gone home it was heaven. Yosemite itself is a valley surrounded by mountains, most of which are so well known that you will recognise them even if you didn?t know it was Yosemite, They have been used in many films, El Capitain was climbed by Spock in the only Star Trek film that my husband has persuaded me to watch, Half Dome is one of the most photographed and is often found in picture shops. The river runs through the centre of the valley and is great for paddling in or canoeing on. There are many waterfalls in the area and they differ depending on which season you visit in. We were there in early September so the water levels were very low, but you could see what the size would be in spring from the discolouration of the rock. Winter, being up in the mountains, not far from the ski resorts of Mammoth and Lake Tahoe, the valley is covered in snow and many of the roads are impassable, but this causes the
          huge waterfalls in early spring. The whole valley is glacially produced. We did not even touch the surface of Yosemite, and I will definitely be going back one day, probably in a different season. Staying in the village is not cheap, and the food available is fairly typical fried food restaurants but the nature, wildlife and conservation of the area is truly amazing, whether you walk or not no one will be disappointed, and there are many important viewing points that are accessible by car and so much more than just the valley floor. However one thing you can be sure of, on my next visit I will certainly fill up with petrol at the first opportunity and I will not go bank holiday weekend. Thank you for reading, I look forward to reading your comments and if any of you do decide to visit Yosemite, I really hope you enjoy it.

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            29.04.2004 00:29

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            Yosemite - go there if you ever get a chance - Advantages: Unbelievable scenery, peaceful, Go to Glacier point - Disadvantages: a Long way away

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            03.03.2003 05:00
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            Yosemite made Ansel Adams famous, NOT the other way round. I am sure he would have been the first to agree with that. Yosemite is one of the places in the world I will take my child one day. Other reviews convey much of what you cannot help but feel after even the briefest of visits to this precious valley and it's protecting mountain ranges. I won't try to repeat them, but just add my deep memories about time spent there:- - my wife and I picnicked in a valley of such depth next to a stream of purest melted snow. We paddled our feet and got dizzy just looking up to the ridges above us. Magical. - a gentle stroll through the oldest living things - the sequoia - the scent of tree sap and the chipmunks scurrying over fallen trunks makes you feel but a temporary aberation in time. - Tuolumne meadows so high above the valley floor bursting with life and colour that reflects like a postcard in Tenyaka Lake - but it is real. I guess the above makes me sound like some soppy type - you can call me that if disagree and have spent time in Yosemite. But unless you have your eyes shut, I very much doubt you will disagree. The details:- +++++++++ getting there and getting around __________________________ Getting there is easiest by car but is a long drive from most major flight destinations You can get to Merced with Amtrak or Greyhound. These link up with YARTS to get you into Yosemite Valley. I hate to say so but having a car is the best way in my view. But, that does depend on how long you have. Free shuttle buses are in Yosemite Valley (all year), Wawona/Mariposa Grove (spring-fall), and Tuolumne Meadows (summer). Once there park up and get out an walk and walk and walk. Make sure you have the right gear, experience and Wilderness pass if you got of off unrestricted paths or want to camp. There are many rules and regulations - check all this out
            with the Yosemite National park . When _____ Access to the park can be impossible or very limited due to the weather / winter snow and ice. Check carefully before you go - as deviations are huge in mileage terms. In particular, Tioga Road (Highway 120 through the park), mariposa Road and Glacier Point Road are ALWAYS closed for the winter. They usually open in late May or early June - but check! Summer gets very busy - but access is wider. How Much _________ There are a large choice of passes on offer with one car for $20.00 giving 7 Days admission. Where to stay ___________ Lodging inside Yosemite is possible but people book up so far in advance s almost impossible to get in unless you did so last year. There are a number of lodging solutions in the "gateway communities" - not always glorious but often cheaper (but not cheap). This is one place it pays to plan ahead.

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              22.04.2002 21:54

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              breathtakingly beautiful in winter with the added advantage of being much quieter - Advantages: stunning scenery, good in all seasons - Disadvantages: gets crowded

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              08.09.2001 15:59
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              I've known Karen for well let's just say a long time. The first time I really noticed her was when she was walking to her car on her way to exercise class. I lived two houses down and across the street. Even at that distance I could tell that she had a short sleeve black leotard on black tights with seams up the back of her legs. Her sister-in-law was with her and she had on the same thing. Karen is the on e that stood out in my mind the most, though. I ended up waiting outside foe another hour before I got to see them come back home. No shorts, no shirt on over their little exercise outfits. It's been almost thirty years and I still remember that day as if was yesterday. After that night I made it a point to go over and meet her and her husband. We became best friends for the next ten years until we moved. I knew she was aware of the reason I was always over there. It didn't take a rocket scientist to realize that whenever she was dressed for her exercise class or in her bathing suit I was there. I was there with or without her husband being there. She used to tease me by walking around all day in her tights and leotards or saying she was going to sit in the hot tub and end up sitting in the living room with me drinking wearing her skimpy bathing suit all day. We never did anything in fact we never even talked about doing anything with each other. Sometimes after we moved we had a pool at our other house they would come over and she would grab me and she even went skinny- dipping. For some reason we never got together. Moreover, we've always kept in touch. Now I was divorced and had been thinking about her. I wanted to call her but I thought it might be too obvious. Then she called me one day. She had been divorced for about a year. We talked about the old times but not about us getting together. I promised to call her back in the next couple of days so we could meet for lunch the next weekend. The last thing I asked was if she still
              had that pair of tights and leotard. She just laughed and hung up. Talk about feeling like a fool. I called Karen back the next day. Nothing like rushing everything was it? We decided to go out and have a few beers that coming Saturday instead of me picking her up or just meeting somewhere she wanted to come over to my house. That was fine except that it meant I had to clean everything in the house for once. Moreover, I only had two days to do it. It would be worth it to see her again. I got out of bed early that Saturday morning made coffee and drank the whole pot. I took a shower and just put on a pair of shorts and waited for her to show up. Right on time she knocked on the front door. I almost ran to the door and almost died when I opened it and saw her standing there with those tights and leotard on. Only this time she did have a pair of shorts on. She said she didn't want the neighbors to talk too much right at first. I finally remembered to ask her in. She looked so good I forgot everything I was going to say to her. We walked back in the living room and before she sat down she unsnapped her shorts and let her shorts drop to her feet and then kicked them off. I could see her little mound sticking out of her crotch. "You haven't changed a bit, have you," she said as she caught me looking at her crotch. I didn't say anything as she sat down next to me on the couch. She put her feet up in my lap and made herself comfortable. I could feel myself growing under the weight of her feet on my crotch. I looked down and saw her feet and her toes moving around the way that women do when they have hose on I just wanted to suck every one of her toes. "Have you been drinking already this morning?" I asked her. "No, I just thought we'd do what we've been wanting to do for twenty years," she answered as she moved her heels around on my swollen penis. I was about to shoot off in my shorts so I had to do somethi
              ng. I put my hands down on her feet and started rubbing them and then we off to the races. I slowly moved one of my hands up her leg to her crotch, which was already damp even through her tights and leotard. She spread her legs so I could get my hand up between her legs. As she spread her legs she picked one up and put her foot at my mouth so I grabbed it with my free hand and started sucking her toes through the tights. She must have been reading my mind. I sucked and licked her toes until they were sopping wet. All that time I had been rubbing her vagina through her outfit and actually had my fingers with the fabric of the tights and leotard up inside her. Karen reached up and started pulling her leotard down and exposed her perfect breast. Small but perfect. When she got her leotard down to her waist she grabbed the tights and pulled everything off at once. I didn't miss a beat. I kept sucking her toes and slowly moved up to her crotch. I shifted my position and put my head right between her legs and sucked and licked and fingered until she couldn't take anymore and came. Not just a small orgasm but a real screaming bucking bronco orgasm. She grabbed my head and wouldn't let go until she was finished. She smelled so good I didn't want to move anyway. Once she had finished she pulled me up further on her and took my penis in her hand and guided it into her. She was so wet but it was still tight. I tried to hold off as long as I could but I didn't last too long. I think my orgasm lasted longer than the actual working up to it. And it felt so good. We were both so wet from sweating by the time we were through. I could feel my heart beating in my head. Afterwards we just lay there until we were both ready to move. Then we just moved into my bedroom and by then we were both ready again. At least I was and she could see that. Wasting no time Karen laid down on her stomach so her firm butt was staring at me. I started at her feet agai
              n and worked my way up to her butt kissing the backs of her legs all the way. Especially that spot behind her knees. That had to be one of her hot spots. She couldn't keep still when I was there. I made it up to her butt and put my hand down between her legs and began rubbing her vagina. She was still wet with both of our juices from our session on the couch. I had her moaning softly now. I was kissing her but all over and running my tongue up and down her crack. Before I did anything else I moved around so my crotch would be in her face hoping she might take the hint and take me in her mouth. She did and it sent chills up and down my spine. That just made me work harder on her and I buried my face in her butt and found her tight little butthole. My tongue was working its way up and down her hole. I was trying not to think about what she was doing to me because I didn't know how long I would last, it felt so good. Her lips were so soft running up and down my penis. I took my hand and rubbed my fingers against her vagina to get them slippery and put a finger on her butthole. She didn't seem to mind so I gently eased it inside her butt. That just seemed to make her work harder on me. After moving my finger in and out of her butthole I made my decision. I switched positions again before it was too late for me. I moved in behind her and pulled her up on her knees. I pushed my penis inside her vagina to get it good and wet then pulled back out of her and put the head of my dick on her butthole. First I put my hand back on her vagina and found her clit and began massaging her to take her mind off what I was going to do. Her butthole was already lubricated from my fingers so there wasn't much resistance as I pushed my penis past the lips of her butthole. It was so tight I didn't even want to move. I just wanted to stay there and feel the tightness forever. She didn't want me to just stay there she wanted more. She pushed her butt bac
              k against me and suddenly I was all the way inside her. I started moving my finger more swiftly against her clit as I began to move in and out of her butthole. She was matching my thrust with her own making a smacking noise as her butt met my crotch. I don't know which got to her first but she started having an orgasm. She pushed back against me as hard as she could to get me inside her as far as I could. That was all it took for me. I could feel my sperm moving up my shaft and shooting out inside her butt. I didn't even have to move anymore it was just coming out on it's own. Karen finally collapsed back down on her stomach with me still inside her butthole. I was going to pull out but she still felt so good I stayed inside her until I shrank enough. Nevertheless, it still felt good even though I was smaller now. She rolled over and we kissed. Those long sensuous kisses that can get me hard again very quickly. I'd like to say we did more that day but we didn't. She had to leave not long after that. However, we did and are still getting together as often as we can. I did find out that she could be a very bad little kinky woman, thank goodness.

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                08.09.2001 15:58
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                If you are in America, you may want to stay in hotels or in built up cities, but you must go in to California and visit Yosemite National Park. When you get there you will think, “I want to stay here for life”, but you can’t because of the wildlife. If you enjoy climbing, you will love Yosemite because of the Big Wall climbs, they are climbs, which would take you about 15 to 40 pitches (a rope length is a pitch). A sensible idea would be take your climbing gear in different bags to spread the weight. A must see in Yosemite are the waterfalls; they all have warm or cold pools of water around the bottom of them, which are lovely to swim in. A few of the waterfalls I went to were called Yosemite Falls and Bridalveil Falls. If you like trees you will have to go and see the Sequoia trees, the second largest tree in the USA, one of the trees has a hole placed through it and you used to be able to drive through it but now it is just a tourist attraction. It would take you three 5in by 7in photos to fit the whole tree in, from top to bottom. One of the best bits of being in Yosemite is seeing the wildlife, you are likely to see Squirrel, Deer, Chipmunks, maybe a Porcupine, Bats, Racoons, but don’t get your hopes up to much to see bears in the day because it is to dangerous to stay in the park at night, so you may have to make a day trip. The price to get in is only $20 for day.

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                11.04.2001 22:07
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                What can I say about this place other than WOW! I will tell you about both Yosemite itself and the hotel we stayed in – The Miners Inn at Mariposa. Miners Inn – Mariposa We stayed two nights at the Miners Inn which is located in a small town called Mariposa. It is approximately 40 minutes to Yosemite entrance and the drive is beautiful. We stayed during the summer of 2000 but apparently if you travel between the two in the winter you have to take a totally different route as the “normal” route is inaccessible because of the snow. When we arrived at the hotel after a long drive from San Francisco we found though it looked like a cheap motel and were a little concerned. We went through to the reception which is located in a shop on the site and were greeted by very friendly staff who gave us maps of the hotel and a leaflet stating the places of interest in the town. We were directed to our parking area and told how to find our room. The hotel was split into two main buildings on two floors each. There was the shop, as mentioned which sold snacks and usual tourist stuff i.e. films, maps, souvenirs etc. There was also a restaurant on site and an outdoor swimming pool. Our room was on the first floor and although the outside of the buildings and the corridors looked a little shabby the room was very pleasant. It was very large with a large window overlooking some fantastic scenery. The bedding and carpeting was very clean as was the bathroom. It had phones, TV, air conditioning and two queen sized beds. Outside the rear of the hotel was a garden area with seating and between the two main buildings a small outside pool. The pool is not supervised so care needs to be taken with children, but it was very pleasant and was afforded some shade from the buildings. Across the car park was the restaurant. This opened early for breakfasts and stayed open all day and well into the night. You ca
                n also eat outside if you can stand the heat. The menu should suit all tastes and is very reasonably priced. The restaurant is licensed. We found our stay here to be very comfortable and the staff at both the hotel and restaurant were lovely. The town has all the local amenities you should need, just over the road from the hotel is the visitors centre – they gave us maps and advised us the best way to get to and tour Yosemite. There are a number of shops, supermarkets and petrol stations within walking distance. There are lots of hotels closer to Yosemite, but we found this one to be very nice and the 35 minute drive to the park was great. We only paid about $50 per room per night. Yosemite National Park Mariposa Grove This is the place where the Giant Sequillla trees grow. I must admit, I wasn’t too interested in visiting here, after all, you can see trees anywhere right? Wrong! These trees are huge, I mean really huge. We got here mid morning and were just in time to get on the next tram tour (they run every 20 mins or so). This tour is great as you travel on a tram and a guide points out all the relevant sights etc, and can get on and off whenever you want and catch another tram later at no extra cost or even walk the route, although there are bears about! Well worth the visit. Even the tallest, largest man will feel like a drawf here. Glacier Point Next we went along to Glacier Point. This is quite a hair-raising drive up the winding roads, but well worth it. When you get to the car park, you walk to the edge of the mountain and WOW. You are 12,000 feet above sea level and you know it – there is a sheer drop down, but the view is truly amazing. There are waterfalls, mountains, trees and snow, even in summer. You can see a mountain called Half Dome, which is the shape you would expect. People actually go climbing and abseiling on it. You will need your camera here, but do
                n’t worry if you run out of film, there is a shop and restaurant here too. Yosemite Valley After this, we travelled back down into the valley itself. Here you can look up to the mountains and waterfalls. As you drive round the valley, you follow a quite beautiful river with rapids and trees etc. There are lots of parking stops along the way to take in the view and use that camera again. Once in the valley there are shops, restaurants and the usual tourist memorabilia. A truly beautiful place, only spoilt by us tourists!

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                03.03.2001 15:49
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                I visited the west coast of the USA in Summer 1999. I flew into San Francisco, and before embarking on a cycle-tour of the west coast visited Yosemite National Park for three days of walking. Packing for the trip was hard work, as we were going to be carrying our stuff we needed to travel very light. I put one change of clothes in the car for the way back, and packed one change of clothes to take with me in my bag - However this change of clothes was not needed - There were too many bugs at night to want to remove your clothes! In the way of food we packed several "add water and stir" type food, macaroni & cheese, trail mix (nuts & stuff), energy bars, tang (orange drink) and a couple of M&Ms. The first day we visited the lower valley for a look around, we drove around mainly, stopping in car-parks and by the side of the road to look at the spectacular scenery. We managed to get some great photos. The valley was nice, but quite busy. It is still worth a good look around though. We drove up to a car park near Tuolumne Meadows, where we started walking. We quickly climbed from there on a fairly easy path. The walking lasted the most part of the afternoon. We stopped early-evening and decided to pitch our tents in a small area next to a stream - Nice choice for water - Bad choice for bugs... The night was alright, we had to use "bear barrels" to store our food and toothpaste - we weren't keen on having "visitors" eating our food. There was a little altitude sickness that night, because we had ascended quickly from sea level, then had walked quickly. I woke early and tried to watch the sunrise as others were being ill. In the morning we pumped a little water, then walked on to Vogelsang were there were taps for water (it is a small camping location). Breakfast consisted of a couple of cups of Tang, and some oats and water (very appetising). We walked most of the day, taking
                regular breaks, and drinking loads of water. The scenery was stunning, some that I'll remember and love all my life. The weather was hot, and our feet were sore, but the great feeling of awe made up for all this. We stopped over near Lake Merced at a campsite for a second night where we were visited by bears, I slept right through it, however some of the camp were banging their pots and pans scaring the bears off. The third day we woke early and followed the river back to a road where our group 'leader' hitch-hiked back to the car.. The trip was probably on of the best ones I have ever had, the scenery was memorable, and although the trip wasn't the hardest thing I've done, it was a great feeling of achievement. I would strongly recommend the beauty of Yosemite for anyone who wants to visit, whatever activity they want to do. If you go walking a couple of points: - Bring enough to eat, add extra M&Ms to your trail mix - Get a decent pair of hiking boots, trainers are NOT recommended - Bring a camera - Have several changes of socks - Get a decent water pump, bring some water pills Jamie

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                  20.01.2001 23:05
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                  I had the pleasure of touring California by car and stopping off in many places. One of these was the wonderful Yosemite Park. You've just got to go! It's massive with mountains, waterfalls, rivers, beautiful trees and lots of open space. We saw deer, chipmunks and all sorts of birds. It's a taste of heaven. The Americans certainly know how to organise their natural wonders. There are the usual visitor centres, snack bars and camping sites - which are all well managed. But best of all you can wander off into solitude so that all you hear is peace and tranquility in beautiful surroundings. This must be the nearest you can get to communing with nature. I've got a large photo, above my computer, of Yosemite that I took on my visit. There is a meandering river with mountains behind. When I'm getting stressed it's a place to visit in my mind. Must go again soon and travel California some more.

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                  08.09.2000 07:31
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                  The first thing you notice when you get to Yosemite is that it's a lot bigger than you imagined. The park is about 40 by 50 miles and covered by rugged terrain. It would take several weeks to explore everywhere, and that's not even giving you time to really enjoy the best bits. There are about 20 different campsites ranging from White Wolf, up over 8000 feet and freezing even in summer, the the extremely comfortable (and hideously expensive) hotel in the valley. There are more trails than you could hike in a fortnight and some amazing scenery. Don't miss the Two Waterfalls Trail, and bring a bathing costume because there's a beautiful lake at the halfway point. You might want to load up on food and such because it is a bit expensive inside the park. Remember to bring lots of film!

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                    17.08.2000 16:49

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                    If you have never been to Yosemite the I like countless millions of others would heartily reccomend it to you. It is a natural wonder and one of the most idylic places on earth, and being in California makes it even better! However, a few cautionary words. 1. Book your accomodation in advance if you possibly can, unless you enjoy standing around in queue's that is. 2. The accomodation is basic, very basic, unless of course you have much cash to spare and stay at the only Hotel ($100+) 3. If you can bring your own food, and BBQ. The restaurant! and refectory's are adequate but not culinary treats. 4. be prepared for crowds. Dependent upon when you go you will probabley be surprised at how busy the palce is. It is very very popular and the majot valley floor highlights are always overcroweded. So get off the beaten trak on go hiking. I stress that these few cautionary words are far outwayed by the magnificence of the place, so go go go and enjoy it.

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                  Yosemite National Park is a national park largely in Mariposa County, and Tuolumne County, California, United States. The park covers an area of 1,189 mi² (3,081 km²) and reaches across the western slopes of the Sierra Nevada mountain chain. Yosemite is visited by over 3.5 million visitors each year, with most only seeing the seven square miles of Yosemite Valley. Designated a World Heritage Site in 1984, Yosemite is internationally recognized for its spectacular granite cliffs, waterfalls, clear streams, Giant Sequoia groves, and biological diversity. About 89% of the park is designated Wilderness. It was also the first park set aside by the U.S. federal government. Although not the first designated national park, Yosemite was a focal point in the development of the national park idea, largely owing to the work of people like John Muir