Yesterday Ethel and I made a long day trip down to Yosemite to hike Clouds Rest with a little group. We stayed at Maud and David's house in Carson Friday night to facilitate the 4:45 am departure Saturday morning. After picking up a couple more people in Carson, we were 6 strong and on the road well before sunrise.
We were over Tioga Pass and on the trail at the west end of Tenaya Lake a few minutes after 8am. The hike is 7ish miles each way, and it's not very difficult, so it's pretty well-traveled.
Here are some photos. This is also my first experience shooting RAW files and pre-processing them, so these are a bit of an experiment!
Early in the hike; our first view of the huge granite formations in Yosemite
The hike starts flat, climbs some switchbacks, and drops back down into rolling flats for most of the route.
A little puddle along the way
Good neighborhood to be in
A more appropriate backdrop for the trail sign
From here, the trail follows a very narrow ridgeline up to the summit. The views got better with every step along the exposed spine.
Our starting point, Tenaya, with mountains behind
A better view of the mountains north of Tenaya
Every step along the ridge showed us more and more of the huge slabs in the valley.
More Yosemite granite
Looking down into the Valley
Another view down the Valley
It was neat to look down on Half Dome. We could see the cables with our naked eye, and hikers on the top through the camera lens.
Looking east across Tenaya
We split up a bit on the way down. David and I made it back first, and I had come prepared. I scampered over to the lake, shimmied into my wetsuit, and swam about halfway across, pausing a few times to revel in the views. Even though it's an alpine lake, it was quite warm after a summer of sunlight.
We piled back into the minivan, drove back over Tioga, stopped at the Mobil station for fish tacos and whatnot, scattered once back in Carson, and were back home in Reno around 8:30pm.
Long day, but worth it!
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