Down the mountain and up the mountain

One of the stories I tell in kindergarten is about Mr. Wiggle and Mr. Waggle who spend their time going down the mountain and up the mountain visiting each other. In the last few days, that’s what I have felt like going up and down 7000 foot passes on my way from here to there. First, it was up and down into Sequoia Park, then up and down into Yosemite and then up and down into the Yosemite Valley. On our last day in the park, the ups and downs got even larger as we went up into the park, down into the valley and then way up all the way across the ridge of the Sierras that crosses from the west to the east to Tioga Pass which is at almost 10,000 feet. The ride through the park was all way up high, with snow on the edge of the road from the storms that came through a week or so before. We were lucky to be able to take that road at all as it is open for such a short part of the year. But lucky we were to see the views of Half Dome from the other side, alpine lakes and meadows and breath-taking views down the valley on the other side of the pass. The aspens were in full foliage yellow and with the sun behind them, they shimmered in the kind of gold that sent the prospectors west.

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The visitor’s center was closed on the east side so Janie and I got creative with our hiking for the day. We chose a huge rock face across a meadow, scrambled up like a couple of monkeys and ate our lunch and did some writing on a ledge quite a ways up. The sun was shining and the views were great but I think we both spent a little too much of our energy there wondering if we would be able to get down again!

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At the bottom of the pass, we headed north to South Lake Tahoe. The views across the valley were dominated by the Sierras to our west. We saw our first cattle in days and the yellow aspens were still visible along the way. Like Mr. Wiggle and Mr. Waggle, we went up the mountain one more time up the Kingman grade climbing up over another 8000 foot pass and down the other side into South Lake Tahoe to visit my mother’s best friend for a few days. My ears should be done popping for a bit!

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1 Comment

  1. jan bee

     /  October 21, 2011

    Tioga Pass is a georgious drive. I’m glad you made it before the storms set in.

    Reply

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