My road trip started from Fresno to Yosemite, I know, I know is mountain again! But hey, since I am in Fresno, I might as well pay a visit to Yosemite. The total journey is about 1.5 hour drive from Fresno.
Yosemite – “those who killed”
Yosemite sound very Japanese when I first heard it but it is actually native Indian language – ” those who killed”. It was home for American Indians perhaps as early as ten thousand years ago. The landscape is different on the way to Yosemite National Park. No more desert view and no more cacti plants but big pine trees and oak trees.
There is an entrance for Yosemite National Park, a car cost $30.00 for 7 days. Some people do camp and stay inside the Park for days.
Here are my 10 tips for you while exploring Yosemite Valley!
1. Tunnel View Point
Few important site you need to watch out in Yosemite National Park and one of them is the tunnel view.
Simply park your car at parking lot and make your way to the vista. The spot is very popular among visitors. From the vista you can see El Capitan, Half Dome and Bridalveil Fall.
2. El Capitan
The vertical rock formation, mostly composed of granite is called El Capitan. It is a popular location for rock climbers and BASE jumpers.
3. Bridalveil Fall
One of the most prominent waterfalls in Yosemite! You can walk closer to the base of the fall and feel the splash on your face.
4. Half Dome
Half Dome is located at eastern end of Yosemite Valley and it is famous for its Half Dome trail for experience hikers.
Half Dome trail is one of the most dangerous trail for dare devil hikers, permit is needed to do the hike. Total round trip to go up and down is 14 miles! So one need to be depart early before it get really dark.
5. Half Dome Village
Half Dome Village is also known as Curry Village, you will find wooden cabins for the hikers.
6. Village Store
You can top up your food supplies at village store or even shop for souvenirs from Yosemite Valley. Best thing to get is the bear t-shirt, bear mugs or anything related to California big brown bears.
7. Post Office in Yosemite National Park
Mail a postcard of Yosemite landscape back home at the post office here.
8. Yosemite Visitor Center & Theater
Get some background knowledge here at the visitor center and watch some short film.
9. Use Shuttle Buses
Once you find a spot to park your car, you can then hop on to the Valley shuttle bus, which runs on a continuous loops, serving all lodging and camping venues as well as the major eateries, shopping areas & popular attractions. All the stops has a number and you can refer to the map for detail information.
10. Mirror Lake
This is photographers’ favorite spot! Skilled photographer can shoot a good picture of the reflection of the mountains from the Mirror Lake.
The trail took about 3.8 km round trip from the trailhead to Mirror Lake. People rush to Mirror Lake to see the reflection of the Half Dome on the lake. The trial is mild and suitable for beginner.
This is how it look like : Reflection of Half Dome on Mirror Lake – picture taken from hand phone only.
Tips on Way out of Yosemite
On the way out of Yosemite National Park, few things you may want to look at.
Observe the housing at the foot of the mountain, pretty rustic.
About an hour driving out from Yosemite, we passed by a small town called Mariposa meaning in Spanish – Butterfly. No wonder the mural of the wall were drawn with colorful butterflies.
Some would choose to stay over at Mariposa when spending few days in Yosemite. The small town has everything you need and more convenient compare to living inside the National Park.
We continue our journey to San Francisco. Finally saw some cows at the farming in California. The farm is so huge as compared to the one I saw in UK and Australia.
There are plenty of land for the cow to move around in the farm -boundless! I wonder how farmer’s life is like?
This is boundless too!
Saw a classic car at the gas station! Cute color!
After this bridge, another an hour, we will be in San Francisco!
Road Jam, you get that you when are heading to big city.
The view from Yosemite Valley to Grand Canyon is totally different. At the Grand Canyon road trip, you see desert and cacti plant. In Yosemite road trip, you see big pine trees & oak trees. Two totally different thing and different view. For me, I prefer Grand Canyon as the view is breathtaking and was my first time seeing such scenery but I also enjoy the Yosemite Valley. I am glad I have done both.