Sunday, May 23, 2004

The Yosemite 7, Sunday, Day Three

Yeah. I woke up at 2:30 when Dave got up for a couple of minutes, looked at my watch thinking it might be 4:30. Next time I remember being conscious, the sun was up. Oh well. Everything we see will stll be gorgeous, and once we're in the vallye we can possibly arrange to be somewhere near sunset and we won't hae so far to go for sunrise either.

Dan made omelettes and potatoes (none of those for me and no omelette for John). Excellent breakfast! Ran out of propane in the middle of the first omelette and had to scramble to attach a new can. Also, we were trying to use a griddle, which isn't the best for omelettes. The eggs tended to run all over and didn't cook very quickly. Took us a while to figure it out - the cooking was from not having enough propane left and arranging the ingredients in a circle can keep the eggs in (though they can leak out).

After breakfast, we spent a bit over an hour cleaning up and breaking camp. Not bad, but as much as I enjoyed staying somewhere besides the Valley floor, but moving camp is a pain. We basically wasted about four hours of daylight on the move, between breaking camp, getting to the new site, and setting up again.

'On the way' to the valley, we all went over to Glacier Point. There were a lot of people there, and a ton of cars parked around the trailheads we used on Friday and Saturday. We all agreed that we were glad we did those trails on other days. I have a feeling that Saturday was for arriving and doing little bits, and now Sunday is for bigger hikes such as Dewey and Sentinel.

The views from Glacier Point are, of course spectacular, even with all the people and cars. I took another panorama and some other shots, including some good ones of some or all of the group. I called and talked to Dawn briefly - had a full digital signal, as I did on Sentinel Dome and at Dewey Point. I'm convinced there's an AT&T digital cell site in the Vally, although the coverage in the valley is still inconsistent. I had a full signal in the middle of Cook Meadow, but only a partial signal at our Upper Pines camp site. Rachel was napping as I expected, so I didn't get to talk to her, but Dawn and I had a nice, if brief, conversation. I get to talk to them enough that the missing isn't HARD, just missing.

Frank talked to his wife, Sigute, Dan talked to Karyn, and Daniel talked to a friend named Becky, all on my phone. Dan's is GSM and Daniel's is either analog or not AT&T, I'm not sure which. I'm glad I have a national plan with lots of minutes, courtesy of my job. I don't even have to worry about whether I'm on an analog roaming network - if the call goes through it's just minutes.

This is, of course, a boys-only trip. I've barely mentioned that before. There were two women sunbathing near where we sat for a snack, and several of the guys enjoyed ogling them. When the guys seemed disappointed to leave after our snack, Chris and I decided to tell them that we had talked to them and they were named Heather and Ginger and might meet us at the pizza place at Camp Curry tonight. It was total bullshit, but they ate it up. Unfortunately, Dan and Frank weren't there when Chris told them. It's probably just as well about Dan; he probably would have known I was full of it.

En route to the Vally, John decided to go back to Wawona to get gas, so we separated briefly. Dan, Frank, and I headed for the Valley, followed by Chris and Dave, stopping just past the tunnel on 41 for a grand vista. Absolutely spectacular views that really show the shape of the Valley; you know, from that angle, you couldn't even really tell that there are roads, parking lots, and a bunch of buildings down there.

Unlike at Wawona, we really do have two sites for tonight and tomorrow; they're each a little bigger than the one at Wawona, they're next to eachother, and the bear boxes are bigger. After getting set up, Dan, Frank and I went to the store right after John and Daniel showed up. We picked up garlic bread, steak and more salad stuff. Oh, and A-1 steak sauce. Turns out I like that stuff; it's not like most BBQ sauces, which I don't tend to like.

I also picked up a refrigerator magnet for Dawn and a cute t-shirt for Rachel. If only she'll wear it. I would like to get her a Go Climb a Rock shirt, but they don't seem to have 4T, only children's small, which is still way too big for her. I still want to get a couple more things, either hats or sweatshirts, so maybe I'll ask about smaller sizes then. Don't really need to spend tons of money, so I'll try not to get too many things.

After dropping off the food, we picked up Daniel and drove over to the base of Yosemite Falls. It's gorgeous as always. Not running as strongly as I've seen at this time of year, but certainly fairly fast. After that, we walked to the aforementioned Cook Meadow and saw deer and more views of various parts of the park. I really was waiting for some sunset pics of Half dome. I'm not sure I really got what I wanted, but if the little LCD is really any guide, I've got at least a few great pictues on there, if I may say so.

Talked to Dawn some more while waiting for the sunset shots. Told her what was up and the plan for tomorrow (Vernal & Nevada Falls via the Mist Trail, followed by pizza and liquor at Camp Curry). Talked to Rachel a bit as well. She was very excitedly eating dinner with Dawn and our friend Kara; they were having strawberries at that point, which Rachel simply loves. She hasn't seen a strawberry she wasn't falling all over herself to eat. My little strawberry fiend.

Dinner was good. Had some trouble cooking the garlic bread; we tried to cook it on the grill over the fire pit, but if we got it close enough to get hot it seemed too much in danger of catching fire, so we wound up using the griddle after we finished using it for the steak. For dessert, we had chocolate cake with TONS of frosting given to us by our neighbors in the next site. They have a cute one-year-old, whose birthday (today) they were celebrating.

Finished off the day with a drive out to a spot where people start their climbs up El Capitan. Gazed at starts, including the ones in El Cap. Of course, those aren't stars - they're climbers making camp right up on the wall. Some of them probably in the thousands of feet above ground. Maybe someday. Right now, I'm just hoping to be able to start climbing again in a gym, nevermind El Cap.

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