Mount Rainier National Park, right off the road. Such a beautiful place.
Yosemite National Park is like a “Grand Central Station” as my friend Paul put it. That is because of its close proximity to San Francisco, and it’s amazingness. In any case, this backpacking trip was in “The High Country” which meant we stayed around 9,000 ft elevation most of the trip, and we started it in the Tuolumne Meadows Backpackers site on the eastern side of the park, away from the zoo of people.
Our guides made sure we weren’t hiking with War and Peace, and made sure we had warm enough gear. The next morning we headed out on the Cathedral Lakes trailhead and had an easy hike to Lower Cathedral Lake.
Lower Cathedral Lake
I had to hike up to the highest point around of course, and got this panoramic
We laid out and watched the stars until we were nearly frozen and they were ABSOULTELY incredible. I was thinking about how much I wish I could share that experience because I’ve never seen stars so bright and clear. Saw tons of shooting stars, satellites, and this REALLY bright thing which we could only guess that it was the international space station because it flew the speed of a satellite, but was 20x as bright.
The next day we headed over to the Upper Sunrise Lake and did a decent amount of off trail hiking which was pretty neat. Our guides Karen and Mike wanted us to become more familiar with Map and Compass, so it was a good exercise.
Going “off trail”
This night at Sunrise lake seemed like it would be warmer but it wasn’t. It was so cold, that we had frost in our tent, and my swimsuit froze.
The good thing was though that we had a fire that night.
You gotta love my support of Hokie Nation with all my Orange/Maroon gear
Our final day we hiked out past Tenaya lake and got the shuttle back to the Cathedral Lakes Trailhead. That was that and I definitely like the Yosemite backcountry. My guide Karen convinced me to do Half Dome the next day which I have posted about.
Well… ~16 miles round trip, and 4700 feet up, then 4700 feet down. Brutal? Awesome.
So, I am currently staying in Berkeley, CA with my friend Alice who works/goes to school at UC Berkeley. Yesterday I slept a lot, and today I am going to do the same. My goal is to get “bored” because I am doing a backpacking trip this weekend in Yosemite, and one the week after in the Grand Canyon and I want to have a little energy/exploration inside me.
Some of Alice’s awesome friends in San Francisco were celebrating a birthday. So, the 5 of us went to PPQ Dungeness Island and got the Dinner for 6. Here is how it went:
Got off at the Civic Center stop near the Capital. There was some sort of hispanic celebration as can be seen in the photo. Not sure what for…
Ordered the “Dinner for 6″ (There were 5 of us)
- Imperial Rolls
- Papaya Salad with Beef
- Roasted Crab
- Peppercorn Crab
- Five Spices Chicken
- Steamed Shiitake Seabass
- Braised String Beans
- House Garlic Noodles
- Deep Fried Banana with Ice Cream
We all had bibs tied on by our waiter. I guess I should shave?
Here is the bib…
And an imported Vietnamese beer
I didn’t get pictures of this really good “green papaya salad” with seasoned beef in it. SOO good. And we also had some other kind of egg rollish things with pork in them. Oh, and the DELICIOUS sea bass. Soo very good.
Crab #1, Butter and Garlic
Crab #2, some other seasoning
A WARM refreshing towel
Birthday Girl and Collins
Fried Banana with some sort of mango and vanilla ice cream
Handstanded with ALL that food in my belly!
Soo, whose captain face turned out better? ROCK THE VOTE/BOAT!
Pictures from the Napa Valley Wine tour are on a plane bound for South Carolina and will appear after a bit. We actually attempted a 12 of 12! I’ll post it after we get pictures.
Here are some pictures of the day after in San Fran!
Golden Gate couple shot
The windswept Guy
The Lovely Hotel, oh I mean Alcatraz
San Fran from Lombard Street
Looking up Lombard
Golden gate in the fog
The ferry building
Am I in L.A.?
“That’s what she said!”
Anyone out there?
one of the 7 hills of San Francisco