Thursday, June 25, 2009

Report back from Yosemite

Last week I went on vacation to Yosemite and San Francisco.  I had tons of fun!  I ate some great vegan food at a vegetarian Vietnamese restaurant called Andy Nguyen's.  I love camping food so I got to eat lots of sandwiches, kabobs, veggie burgers and even nachos.  Here are some pictures from my Yosemite and Mono Lake visits.  

I think this photo is hilarious!  There were numerous little forest squirrels and chipmunks in Yosemite.  On one grueling uphill hike to Vernal Falls (it was mostly hard since I had been hiking for days) squirrels were posing all over for me.  It was nice to break for the uphill trek to capture their poses. 

This photo I took while eating lunch at a stream just past one of the famous waterfalls in Yosemite Valley.  It was such a tranquil spot to stop and take a break from the crowds, which luckily weren't too bad.

This is Half Dome from a distance.  With binoculars you could see what looks like little ants climbing up the mountain.  We didn't have time to attempt this.  Ha!  Like I would try.  My friend Deanna would have loved to, but hiking as much as we did was enough for me.

Most people spend most of their time in Yosemite valley where all the picturesque waterfall photos are taken.  The rest of Yosemite is quite beautiful as well.  The east side of Yosemite had many amazing mountain sights.

Mono Lake!  Wow, what a place!  I describe it as a photographer's dream.  This was all of our favorite place on the vacation.  The tufas (calcite rock) in the lake are so mesmerizing and reading about the unique ecosystem to the lake was fascinating.  

The weather was perfect for reflections on the lake.  It was hard to see where the lake ended and the sky began.  I couldn't stop taking photos of all the tufa formations, along with the clouds and blue skies.

Beautiful!  Can you ask for any more than tufas and mountains and clouds reflecting in the water?  Visiting Mono Lake is an absolute must!

Swallows and lizards could often be seen at Mono Lake.  We also saw a pair of osprey who may have had a nest on top of a tufa in the lake.  This little swallow was allowing me to get closer and closer to get the perfect shot.

I refer to these flowers as death flowers since they grow from decay.  They are actually called snow plants.  These were pointed out to me to take some photos since they are so unique and only bloom between May-July at certain altitudes.  We had just stopped to join the side of the road commotion of taking photos of a bear.  I got to see a bear!


krissy said...

Where is the bear?? Stunning pictures, so beautiful and that swallow picture is great! Just beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

tofufreak said...

what a cute squirrel!!

Beth Barnett said...

Great photos at Mono Lake! When I visited there, it was cloudy and my photos were really blah.