For the first time in almost a year, I crossed something off my Life List: I visited Yosemite National Park in California! Not only did I visit, but I camped there for the weekend with Chris and our friends, Brigette and Brad, and it was so much fun!
Chris and I left early Friday morning to try to snag a walk-in campsite. Some advice when trying to camp in Yosemite: make a reservation at a campsite ahead of time! Yosemite is very popular and touristy. Campsites book up months in advance, especially if you plan to go during the weekend. Even though we left early, we still weren’t able to get a campsite; luckily, we had a backup reservation at Oh Ridge campsite located 30 minutes from the east Yosemite entrance, so we stayed there on Friday night.
Oh Ridge was nice, but compared to Yosemite? Well, there was no comparison. Yosemite is full of gorgeous trees and mountains with tons of people and activity. Oh Ridge reminded me of a rainy desert with not much to do or see. Luckily we only had to stay there one night thanks to Chris, who was able to book us a reservation at a campsite in Yosemite for Saturday night. (Yay for someone else cancelling at the last minute!) After eating breakfast and packing up our gear, we headed back to Yosemite on Saturday afternoon.
As soon as we got to our new campsite (Upper Pines) and unpacked, we were ready to venture out into Yosemite and go on a hike. We decided to hike Mist Trail since it was right next to our campsite. Another reason we decided on Mist Trail was because it would lead us to Vernal Fall. Who doesn’t love a good waterfall???
The hike itself was INTENSE. It was only 3 miles to the top and back, but the first half was a lot of climbing up some steep hills. We had to take a few breaks to catch our breaths, and we were so relieved once we finally reached the top of Vernal Fall! It was a tough hike, but it was worth it: the views from the top were breathtaking. Once we took a bunch of pictures and cooled off, we headed back down. Our legs were so fatigued at this point, every time we walked down a hill, we felt like we were going to collapse. If you want your legs to feel like jelly, hike Vernal Fall in Yosemite!
After we finished our hike, we cooled off some more in a creek and headed back to our campsite. We had dinner and drinks, then built a fire so we could make s’mores and tell “ghost stories.” It was the perfect way to relax after an exhausting day of hiking.
I’m so happy I finally made it to Yosemite; I’ve been wanting to go for the last couple years, but kept putting it off. Now I know how amazingly beautiful it is and I can’t wait to go back. As well as visiting Yosemite again in the future, Chris and I plan to go camping more in general; now that we’ve invested in our own camping gear, we can go camping anytime we want!
Where’s your favorite camping spot? Have you ever gone hiking? Do you like s’mores?