PRSNT ADVENTURE: YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK

Life is an adventure & ultimately we should treat every day like it's an opportunity to make reality out of our dreams. Last week we were supposed to go to a yoga & music festival but quickly realized upon arrival that there was wayyyy to many people there & the vibes were not quite what we had expected. A quick decision later and we were on our way to Yosemite National Park.

imageasset7

Photo: Ryan Griffin / @Pac_fighter

Life is an adventure & ultimately we should treat every day like it's an opportunity to make reality out of our dreams. Last week we were supposed to go to a yoga & music festival but quickly realized upon arrival that there was wayyyy to many people there & the vibes were not quite what we had expected. A quick decision later and we were on our way to Yosemite National Park.

As we got to the valley we had no plans or reservations and had to completely go with the flow and freestyle with what was available. Sometimes that ends up being the best way. We ended up meeting some very generous people, a young couple from Brazil/ Chile and an older couple from San Fransisco, who let us pitch a tent on their camp site the first nights.


As we got to the valley we had no plans or reservations and had to completely go with the flow and freestyle with what was available. Sometimes that ends up being the best way. We ended up meeting some very generous people, a young couple from Brazil/ Chile and an older couple from San Fransisco, who let us pitch a tent on their camp site the first nights.

YOSEMITE VALLEY

There are a total of 5 camp grounds centrally located in the Yosemite Valley. You have Upper and Lower Pines (closets to the Mist Trail and JMT head), north Pines where we stayed, Camp 4 (climbers camp located below El Capitan) and a walk in camp ground (no car parking). If you want to reserve a spot you need to do so when they open registration online. It fills up in minutes so make sure to be quick on the shutter. If you don't get a camp site reserved, you can always post up at the half dome village in the morning (get there early) to get on the list and grab a cancellation. They announce at 3pm each day, you can always try to share with someone else in line and better your odds.  You might get a site, depending on the number of cancellations that day. 

A little morning yoga / PRSNTfit 

Taking a rinse (no soap shower) in the cold, refreshing river 

The beautiful river runs through the upper, lower and north pines campgrounds (it used to have way more water in it) and it's a perfect spot to take a dip to cool off in the hot day. Temperatures in Yosemite during the day in the summer gets up to 90-100 degrees Fahrenheit. The nights can get quite cold so we recommend bringing a good sleeping bag and wool layers. 

GOURMET CAMP COOKING

Jet Boils are staple camping utilities for us. You can boil water in no time and the different cooking options makes it easy to make gourmet camping meals.  


HIKING TRAILS

There are numerous hikes around the valley of Yosemite. You have some that starts down i the valley like 4 mile hike and Yosemite falls, but there is no longer water in the falls so it's not as exciting as back in the day. We found the hike to Sentinel Dome and Taft Point from the parking lot with the same name, to be great for a quick, light exercise with a stunning view. Follow the signs towards Glacier Point from the valley. It's not only a good warm up for the longer hikes like Nevada Falls, Half Dome or Clouds Rest, but it gives you a very good overview of the valley and it's surrounding mountains, providing you with some awareness of where you are at once on the forest trails. You can also drive to Glacier Point and get a closer view of Half Dome, but this is a really touristy spot. The views from the top of Sentinel Dome are stunning and you can pretty much see everything (including Half Dome, El Capitan and the John Muir trail up to Nevada Falls from here.

The terrain surrounding Sentinel Dome is perfect for trail running 

Balance, strength and coordination in one go at the top of Sentinel Dome with a stunning view of Half Dome

From Sentinel Dome you get a stunning view of El Capitan

Watching the sunset on our way down from Glacier Point #jetboil

HALF DOME

To hike Half Dome you need a permit, and these are a little tricky to get. You can enter a lottery online and if you "win" you will receive an email saying you did in the morning. Give yourself at least two days to get a response, for example if you wanna hike on Sunday you apply on Friday. If you don't win, you can apply again. It charges you about $4 each time you apply, but it's worth that investment.


The John Muir Trail starts at the Valley Floor of Yosemite National park and continues through amazing landscape all the way to Mt Whitney

 

As soon as we got our permits to hike Half Dome, we packed our gear and headed out. Our permits allowed back country camping over night, but since this was a spontaneous trip we had to rent bigger pack packs at the shop in half dome village at the mountain shop for $15/day. We only had brought our regular tent so we had to get creative on the pack job. There are two options for trails; the Mist Trail and the well known John Muir Trail. We decided to take the JMT as it's a bit less steep and more comfortable with big packs. Don't get us wrong, this trail is still quite steep, starting at the valley floor on 4000 feet climbing switchbacks 4000 vertical feet up to the top of Half Dome.


Good gear pays off on long hikes, do not forget your hiking shoes, like us ;)

Nevada Falls looking beautiful from one of the look outs of the JMT


The recommended amount to bring for the Half Dome day hike from the valley is 4 Liters per person

The top of Nevada Falls is your last change to fill water, so make sure to bring a water Filter, especially if you are overnighting. 

Nevada Falls is also a great place to stop and take a refreshing dip and cool off from the heat.


LITTLE YOSEMITE BACKPACKERS CAMP

From the Valley to Little Yosemite Camp Grounds it's about 4,3 miles. From the top of Nevada Falls it's only about 1 mile and much flatter terrain, so you don;t need more than about 40 min- 1 hour from there


There are bear boxes provided at Little Yosemite Camp Grounds, but if you are hiking further to the next camp grounds you need to bring a bear container yourself

The nights and mornings are quite cool and temperatures go down to 30 degrees Fahrenheit this time of year. In the day time it tends to heat up and get as high as in the 90s so it's good to layer so you can shed through out the day

Our set up at the back packers campgrounds was pretty sweet. The camp grounds are locate in the back country, 4.3 Miles from the Valley Floor. You do need a permit to sleep there [a ranger checks everybody who comes through]

The view along this trail is heart opening

In the back you can see Clouds Rest

Chico Bags are our favorite lite daypacks

View of the surrounding mountains