Monday, December 27, 2010

Snow . . . Sierras . . . Spectacular

I've been remiss in making postings every day and now I can explain why. I've been traveling and not being a creature of mobile technology I don't do postings very well unless I have a dinosaur desktop in front of me. A couple of days ago it was a desktop that kept eating minutes off my MasterCard.

I need to get a laptop.

Anyway today I made it back to my most favorite place on the surface of the earth, the Sierra Nevada mountains, and specifically to a little glacier-cut cleft in it called Yosemite Valley.

It has been raining in California for days upon endless day, most recently on Christmas Day in most of the state. So that translates to SNOW above 4000 feet above msl.

And this was a first for me. Snow in Yosemite.

Here is where we had to pull over and put on the snow chains. Snow chains aren't actually chains anymore. They are wire cables with steel cylinders ingeniously held on the tire with a little keyhole thing.

Here are my companions in a winter wonderland.

Yosemite Valley is just about the most striking geomorphic feature I have ever seen. Sheer glacier-cut granite cliffs border a valley floor carpeted in meadows and forests.

Neat, huh?

Half Dome is that granite dome you see off in the distance. Here it is a little closer.

I've been up to the top of Half Dome twice in my life. Hopefully there is another trip up there left in me.

Finally, just before losing the light we visited my old friend Yosemite Falls. It was fairly full. Not as you see it in the spring, but compared to when you usually see it in summer, it was a torrent. And a loud one at that.

"I must return to the mountains—to Yosemite. I am told that the winter storms there will not be easily borne, but I am bewitched, enchanted, and tomorrow I must start for the great temple to listen to the winter songs and sermons preached and sung only there."

John Muir in a Letter to Mrs. Ezra Carr (November 15, 1869)


S said...

I really, really love your new camera.

Lesley said...

Yes, great pictures, great visit! Looking forward to next time!

Fort Bend said...

drumming fingers on desk awaiting a new post ....