Wednesday 29 June 2011

Day 88: Rainy Morning in Yosemite

Yosemite Falls

At 3.00am rain began pounding on the veranda roof and didn't let up, despite the weather forecast's insistence that we were experiencing scattered thunder showers.  It seemed a good day to drive down to Yosemite Village and work on Antonia's Junior Ranger Book.  We went to the reconstructed Indian Village to see how her acorn granary design compared with the real thing, the cemetery to find out how Yosemite Pioneers died and the museum because it rained again!  The museum was worth it for the amazing Indian basketwork and the lady telling Indian stories and making tiny baskets. The Junior Ranger programs in the parks are also excellent, but each park has its own style.  In Yosemite, we had to color our book ourselves!

 Joshua Tree and Yosemite Junior Ranger books
In the Ansel Adams gallery, Mike signed himself up to do a 4-hour photography workshop tomorrow.  So far he has met 3 or 4 people toting cameras with 3000-dollar lenses and no idea how to use them.  He showed one lady with very expensive equipment how to turn on the autofocus!  I am wondering whether he has paid a lot of money to go on a course with rich beginners.  Later in the afternoon we met a local photographer who knew the lady giving the course and talked her friend up a lot so I felt reassured.

In the afternoon we decided to drive to Hetch Hetchy, which gets a post all to itself.  Getting out of Yosemite Valley is where the traffic started to get to me a bit. I suppose it is not nearly as bad as the weekend, when our waiter said it took him 4 hours to drive from Bridalveil to Curry Village! Today, it's just a fairly busy road on which people are driving with their heads craned out at the scenery.  Every time they see what they think is a nice photo opportunity, they slow down in the middle of the road and think about where they can park.  Then they pull themselves off the road somehow, discover they aren't really where they want to be, and pull back out.  Usually they do all that with little or no awareness of other road users.  Luckily, there is a perfect solution to this nonsense, provided it's a fine day!  It's possible to walk the whole valley in a day, which is what we're planning to do tomorrow.

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