It was a day of striking contrasts as we continued our journey. We crossed the parched Nevada desert then into the snow-capped Sierra Nevada Mountains for an overnight in Mammoth Lakes.
The popular alpine resort was very different to the last time we stayed. It seemed much larger and rather than snow, this time around, it was warm, the Aspens were lush and the wildflowers were in bloom.
From the resort it is an easy drive to Yosemite National Park, providing the Tioga Pass is open. The pass typically closes from November to the end of May due to snow, but we were fortunate. The road that takes you through the high Tioga Pass has plenty of twists and turns and around each corner, we experienced a wonderland of spectacular views.
As an avid traveller, I have been to many places that have taken my breath away, but at Yosemite, everything looks bigger. Whether you’re being splashed by cascading waterfalls, searching the lush forests for wildlife or gazing at giant granite domes rising thousands of feet above the valley floor, it’s impressive.
The weather had improved, not too hot nor too cold, the sun was bright and the sky cloudless, everything about the day was perfect. Of course, there were crowds of tourists but everyone was really nice and respectful of people taking pictures, some even offering to take your picture.
We took the obligatory tour, again lots of great photo ops. At one point, you can see almost in a single glance, El Capitan, Half Dome, and Yosemite Falls – what an eyeful. You also have a view of the gorgeous sequoia trees and the snow topped mountains.
The original Indian inhabitants of Yosemite described the shape of the valley as “awahni” meaning “place of the gaping mouth”. I can only describe it as inspirational and jaw dropping.
For weather & news updates around south Tenerife check Queenies Daily Snippets