October 29, 2012

31 Trips in Cali, Day 19: Yosemite In Winter

Our 3-night trip to Yosemite in winter: Snow. So much snow.

Usually we don't undertake such a big trip only a week before Christmas, but this was the year I celebrated a Big Birthday, and I wanted to wake up that morning in my favorite place on the planet. (Thus far.)

This was really the first time that the kids, and maybe even I, had ever experienced so much snow. Real Sierra snow, not just driving up to our local mountains and playing in that slushy roadside stuff.
We arrived in the dark, after my husband had to stop and put chains on our tires with gloved hands and me holding a jittery flashlight. We checked into the Yosemite Lodge and awoke to sun and a million, billion fairy sparkles twinkling on the ground and in the trees.

It snowed off and on while we were there. Not a serious storm, but just enough to keep it cold and fresh and let the kids experience snow falling onto their hands and tongues.  
We walked everywhere in the valley, or took the shuttle bus out to the Camp Curry/Happy Isle area. The shuttles, which are usually packed full as a Disney tram during the summer months, were nearly empty.
There were some crazy people camping in their tents at the campgrounds. Obviously they had better insulated sleeping bags than our old Colemans.  At least I hope they did.

Warming up inside the historic (and very pricey) Ahwahnee Hotel.
We hiked through pretty good snowfall to view lower Yosemite Falls:
On the morning that we left, we hiked through the meadow. It was beautiful and sunny and so, so cold. Oh my gah, I was cold.  It was 17 degrees out. That might officially be the coldest temps I've ever experienced.
The chapel. They hold Sunday services here all year long. For me, Yosemite is my church.
I don't want my children to grow up any faster than they already are. But one of the compensations for Santa not coming down the chimney any longer might be the chance for us all to wake up in Yosemite on Christmas morning, and spend the day sharing the great gift of this wondrous place.  Someday.   

Thanks for coming along! Come back for Day 20 of my 31 Trips in California series, when we'll make like California 4th graders and visit a real mission.

Don't miss a single trip: Head over to Day 1 for all the links, or Like me on Facebook. 

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