Wednesday, September 3, 2014

A Grovey Day


I guess that title should read, “A Day in the Grove” …. Mariposa Grove on the south-west side of Yosemite.  But to get there….
2a   2b

….we had to travel through last year’s “Rim Fire” which burned 400 square miles of forest.  Thank goodness the area around this RV Park, I mean “Resort” was spared from the fire…but we saw lots and lots of trees which were green two years ago when we were visiting Yosemite, and now they are either brown and dead, or just plain sticks popping up out of the ground.

2c     2d

And, of course, we just “had” to stop at the famous “Tunnel View” where one can see El Capitan, Half Dome, and Bridal Vale Fall (which, as I will show later, was nearly dried up this time of year).  Of course, as you can see, there was a ton of people, most in tour buses, there too.

They shut off the groves to car traffic years ago, so you have to ride the tram (green thing in the bottom right of the above picture), or walk, or….if you have a handicap placard, you can follow a tram in your own car…which is what we did.  You have the option of listening to the recorded tour being played on the tram, for $12.50 per person, or for free if you don’t.  We decided to listen to the tour, and it was worth the price, in our opinion.  The device plugged right into the car radio, so we did not have to wear headphones like those on the tram.  This is the first stop, an old fallen Sequoia they named “Fallen Monarch”.  It takes many decades for a Sequoia to decay.

3b  3c  3d

I can show lots of tree pictures….but these three here will do.  To the left is the only remaining tree which still stands that had a hole cut into it so that buggies, and later cars, could drive through it….now only people can go through it. In the middle is a tree that looks like a old clothes pin was cut out of it.  This happened from fires, and the tree is as healthy as can be.  To the right is the tallest Sequoia in the Grove.

El Capitan

Half Dome

Bridalveil Fall….not much water there

Dried up Yosemite Falls

Half Dome near base at Mirror Lake

On the way back to the motorhome we drove through the valley where we could see the lack of water coming over the magnificent cliffs.  Late April through mid-May is the best time to visit…the crowds are not bad, and the waterfalls are in full glory.  But you may not be able to get to all areas of the park due to the snow removal in the higher elevations.  We were here two years ago in early May, and Glacier Point was open, but Tioga Pass was not.  Tomorrow we move the motorhome on up and over Tioga Pass to Mono Lake….and on Thursday we might just take another day trip with the car back into Yosemite’s high country.


  1. Beautiful! We have to get back there again someday. It's been years since our last visit.

    1. Yosemite has always been one of my favorite places....have been there so many times since my younger younger days. Marcia's second visit, says we must return again.

  2. Thanks for the tips on when to come. I'd love to see the waterfalls at full tilt. I guess it's a tradeoff with the snow. I must admit though so many people in a national park is making me begin to gravitate to national monuments instead.

    1. There is no doubt that the National Parks can and do get a bit crowded, but timing is everything. And if you think you can only come once to Yosemite, then Spring is the time. You two would just love the many many hike that are available.

  3. Love this place!! Thanks for taking me back:) It is a toss up...fewer people, waterfalls, and snow in the spring or fewer people and cooler temps in the fall and no waterfalls. Tough decision for sure.

    1. I have visited it in Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter. The Winter is very nice, yet cold. Fewest amount of people, the frozen water along the various falls is breath-taking, and oh, did I mention fewest amount of people? I walked half way across the swinging bridge to take a picture, when I turned around to go back there was a coyote standing there looking at me. It sniffed, turned around and walked away. Bears are sleeping, so there really is no threats...but forget the hiking, too dangerous for that.


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