The Set Up –
Yes, this post is about an unexpected trip to Yosemite National Park. However, first things first! We had agreed to do a house sit in Sacramento with one cat – our 50th house sit!
The owners informed us that we might never see the cat during our one-week stay. Apparently, we’d likely see his ‘girlfriend’ just not him as he was timid. That was an understatement.
We arrived, toured the sweet yard and garden area again (familiar to us from our earlier visit) and settled in for our stay. The house and property were covered with statues of dragons and gargoyles. It was quite a spectacle with fantasy images everywhere.
We watched for the cat hoping to make friends, but that was not to be. We did see his friend several times, but she wasn’t ready to get acquainted either, just a few hellos.
Before you freak out the dog in the photo below is not real. The owners had quite a healthy sense of humor!
During our stay, we took a couple of small excursions around town like the grocery story and AAA. One day, we toured a bit around Folsom Lake and back through Granite Bay where Jim had done a house sit on his own. We also visited another homeowner and her cats in Sacramento, our next destination.
A stay in Sacramento isn’t complete unless you visit Old Town Sacramento! We walked around for a while but then it started raining, so we left. But not before Jim made friends with an old timer, a regular in the area.
We wondered how many people have wandered around in here over the years.
Yes, that’s the State Capital
We thought it appropriate to at least take a peek. The whole place is filled with portraits of state officials from recent eras and those long past. Whiskers were much more in fashion in the earlier portraits!
The grounds are filled with mature trees many with tags saying “gift from whomever” and all that. We enjoyed the architecture and only have two photos to share, oh, well.
The ceilings were fantastic!
The Dreaded Call
Three days into our stay, we got a call from the owner. They were returning early because of an injury! That was a shocker – what are we going to do now? That was a first for us, but house sitters know the dreaded call – the plans go out the window, and the house sitters go out the door.
Usually, the homeowners are good about it, even offering a spare bedroom or hotel accommodations, as these folks did. But we’d been in town long enough and decided to visit Yosemite for a few days. Isn’t that what everyone would do? We had sufficient time before our next house sit, so off we went.
That, my friends, is how we ended up taking a trip to Yosemite!
We left Sacramento around noon and drove south and then east passing towns with names like Copperopolis and Groveland. Eventually, Hwy 120 took us straight into Yosemite National Park.
Finding a Campsite
While waiting in line at the park entrance, we saw a sign saying ‘Campgrounds full, ’ and our hearts sank. This is not what campers like to see.
We asked the guy at the entry point if that was in fact true. He told us to try the campground right down the road – Hodgdon Meadow, which we immediately did.
We had no real plans, so we did what anyone with free time and a full tank of gas would do and set off for Yosemite Valley.
Here We Go!
We went into the valley from the north, descending from high in the mountains. Arriving that way we saw the valley from up high and oh, what a sight: a bird’s eye view of one of the gorgeous areas on earth.
After lunch in a parking lot, we did the traditional Yosemite visit, hitting the high spots: Half Dome, El Capitan, the waterfalls, and a hike up a river.
It’s hard to find people who haven’t been to Yosemite and assuming our dear readers have; we won’t try and match the many descriptions and photos available. Of course, all the views are at a picture book level, in every direction.
A Brief Photo Show
We’ll show you some of our favorite photos and pick up the story later. We hope you enjoy these, whether they’re memories or first-time glimpses.
We did visit the Lodge and strolled the grounds a bit, what a place! We didn’t take any pictures of the crowds, also a standard feature of Yosemite in October. We’ve had quite enough of crowds in this lifetime and decided to break away and go where the crowds wouldn’t be: back at our camp site.
We’ll Have to Come Again
We know our stay didn’t do justice to the park. We could have spent days roaming around, hiking and climbing. Those things would have to wait for another visit.
Clouds were forming to the west, and we had to get ready for whatever the night might bring. So we hooked up our tarps high in the trees nearby and spent the night inside our tent – our wettest night camping ever, at least up until then.
(Little did we know we were two days away from an even wetter night of camping.) Oh, what a storm! Rain fell all night and into the next day. California needed the water, that’s for sure, but did the drought have to end all on one night?
What’s Next – Yosemite Part Two
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