My sister’s grandson once referred to Yosemite as Yosomebody, so that’s what it’s become to us.

an early view

an early view

The Park is bigger, more spectacular, and grander than expected in every way.  Preseason, there are few campgrounds open, so this one is packed.  Kids, bikes, tents and small RVs are everywhere.

happy campers

happy campers

There are a few larger motorhomes, but not many.  Lots of campfires keep the air quality interesting.

The access road into Yosomebody is hair-raising.  Dips, twists and turns.  We probably gained and lots 3000 feet of elevation several times.  My head was whipping back & forth, trying to see everything as John maneuvered the Fireball thru the tight turns.  I think he had a death-grip on the steering wheel, but he pretended to be relaxed.  Ha!

We’ve been here for a few days already, and trying to describe this magnificent park seems so trite.  So, I’ll just make a few observations, and post a separate story about the hike of a lifetime we had yesterday.

*The Park spends a lot of time & effort on bear warnings

Guess they are so clever they can even back-seat drive

Guess they are so clever they can even back-seat drive

.  Each campsite has a bear box for all food things.  We don’t leave anything in the truck.  They really should have raven warnings.  These crafty birds are patrolling the campground, and pick up anything not nailed down.

*Why would anyone throw down a cigarette butt in such a place?  One of these morons better hope I’m not around when they are ditching their butt on the ground.

*I’m envious of all the families here – people hiking with their kids (and very young kids).  What memories they’ll have.  So many Asian visitors as well, and many Germans.

*The Rangers are awesome.  It would take the patience of Job to deal with all the people and situations that arise every day.  They’re helpful and polite, in spite of answering the same questions over and over.

*We love the shuttles.  They keep traffic down, and really move large numbers of visitors around efficiently.  They’re electric, so they’re quiet as well.

*What a great place to be on a bicycle!

Lots of markers around regarding the high water of 1996

Lots of markers around regarding the high water of 1997.

*We’re so glad to be here in the off-season.  A fellow hiker yesterday said that the trails are “like Disneyland” from May to September.

*We’re really happy with the Fireball.  It suits our camping needs perfectly.  We revel in all the compliments of people walking by.

*There are a couple of basic subcultures here (this is from John).  First are the lodge/cruise ship people. They ride the bus a bit, eat in the dining rooms there, and get a small slice of Yosomebody life.  Second are the RV/generator people.  Although we have an RV (of sorts), we’re not one of them.  Honestly, why do they need to run those generators all the time?  We can see them sitting inside with their lights on. Third are the small campers, tents and car-sleepers. Pretty low maintenance.  In the campground, we’ve got flush toilets and cold running water only.  Everyone is cooking outside and hanging around outside, huddled around campfires.  Fourth are the Camp 4 folks.  These are the climbers – folks who’ve come to Yosemite to do some serious rock climbing.  They are superfit, drive beat-up cars and vans, and seem to be totally outside the rest of the Yosemite experience.  They wear Patagonia.

More to come – we’re in a hurry to get out & hike today.